Briefline

Anti-vaccine mandate bill finds support from Rep. Lamborn

By: - October 28, 2021 12:29 pm
Trump rally Colorado Springs

U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn, a Colorado Springs Republican, shakes hands with President Donald Trump on stage during a Keep America Great rally Feb. 20, 2020, in Colorado Springs. (Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images)

U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn of Colorado Springs issued a statement on Tuesday calling President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate a “blatant federal overreach,” when announcing that he co-sponsored a bill to block Biden’s vaccine requirements.

Lamborn, a Republican, joined U.S. Rep. Diana Harshbarger, of Tennessee’s 1st Congressional District, in co-sponsoring a bill that would prohibit Biden from requiring federal employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

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The Blocking Joseph Robinette Biden’s Overreaching Vaccine Mandates Act would specifically block Biden’s mandate that all federal workers and contractors, and private employers with over 100 workers, receive a COVID-19 vaccine, and would protect them from “forced vaccinations,” according to a press release from Lamborn.

In his statement, Lamborn said while he has received the COVID-19 vaccine and encourages others to do so, he believes that the decision to get vaccinated or not should be between an individual and their doctor.

“President Biden’s vaccine mandate is blatant federal overreach that undermines confidence in the safety and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccines,” Lamborn said in the press release. “I believe it is fundamentally an individual’s right to choose whether or not to get the vaccine.”

Biden announced a requirement on Sept. 9 that all executive branch federal employees receive the COVID-19 vaccine. He also announced that the Transportation Security Administration will double the fines for travelers who refuse to wear a mask.

Harshbarger introduced the legislation to the U.S. House of Representatives on Sept. 30. Since then, 20 U.S. representatives, all Republicans, have signed on as co-sponsors, including Reps. Scott Fitzgerald, of Wisconsin’s 5th Congressional District, Yvette Herrell, of New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District, and Jeff Duncan, of South Carolina’s 3rd Congressional District. Lamborn is the only sponsor from Colorado. The legislation has little chance of success, since Democrats hold a majority in the House.

“The recent vaccine mandates by President Biden are nothing short of authoritarian government overreach that infringe upon our American civil liberties,” Harshbarger said in an Oct. 1 press release. “The Biden administration has revealed that this isn’t about COVID-19, it’s about control. Americans have rightfully lost their trust in President Biden to provide accurate guidance when it comes to COVID-19 as he continues to put politics over science.”

Lamborn tweeted on Sept. 9 that he thinks the vaccines “are effective at combating the pandemic,” but that Biden should not “ram through federal vaccine mandates.”

Over 414 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been given in the United States between Dec. 14, 2020, and Oct. 25, 2021, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Public health experts say the vaccines are safe and effective.

COVID-19 has killed more than 741,000 people in the United States, including more than 8,400 in Colorado.

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