Is freedom returning to the United States at last? A defense bill put out Tuesday plans to force the Biden administration to take back its Covid-19 inoculation mandate for troops.
This marks a huge win for Republicans, advocates of the military, and families who strongly advocated for the provision to be included, Breitbart News reports.
“Not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Defense shall rescind the mandate that members of the Armed Forces be vaccinated against COVID-19,” the bill reads.
The Biden administration’s military vaccine mandate to take the Covid-19 jabs or face expulsion led to over 8,000 troops being banished from the military. It additionally threatened the careers of at least 60,000 more service members who did not want to take the experimental mRNA jab.
Thousands of those had requested to have a religious exemption from taking the shot, but their inquiries were largely dismissed, according to Breitbart.
In order to go into effect, the bill must now go through Congress and be signed by White House occupant Joe Biden before it becomes a law.
The language in the bill notably does not include the reinstatement of troops who were fired over the mandate.
Key House member Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) addressed this in an online post, saying that the “next steps” are to “reinstate all members of the military wrongfully terminated due to vax.”
The military COVID vaccine mandate will end!
Page 407 & 408 of NDAA text just released.
Next steps: end all COVID vax mandates (healthcare workers and foreign visitors), and reinstate all members of military wrongfully terminated due to vax.https://t.co/hRVftUh6yl pic.twitter.com/o8noBxngGe
— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) December 7, 2022
Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) offered his own thoughts on the negotiated bill as well, writing, “The @freedomcaucus has been fighting to #EndVaxMandates for 2 years – this is a giant step, at least within the military.”
“The #NDAA remains highly flawed – and we need reinstatement, cleared records, & anti-retaliation language,” he continued. “…but HOPEFULLY this step stays in the bill.”
The @freedomcaucus has been fighting to #EndVaxMandates for 2 years – this is a giant step, at least within the military. The #NDAA remains highly flawed – and we need reinstatement, cleared records, & anti-retaliation language… but HOPEFULLY this step stays in the bill. pic.twitter.com/JjAIGHg5YY
— Chip Roy (@chiproytx) December 7, 2022
Republican Sens. Marsha Blackburn (TN), Roger Marshall (KS), Cindy Hyde-Smith (MS), Mike Braun (IN), Deb Fischer (NE), Joni Ernst (IA), Tommy Tuberville (AL), Mike Crapo (ID), Steve Daines (MT), John Hoeven (ND), and Jim Risch (ID) addressed the matter via a joint statement:
In the United States, the number of new servicemembers joining the military is reaching a near record low. The United States needs a strong military to protect our country against the growing threats facing our nation. We are pleased that the final conferenced bill includes language mirroring our amendments’ efforts to protect troops from being fired due to Biden’s COVID vaccine mandate without fair appeal and to the harm of service readiness.
Upon being asked about the provision requiring that servicemembers are no longer forced into taking the Covid-19 shots, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre attacked Republicans as fighting against the health and wellbeing of troops and called the move a “mistake.”
The White House called Congress' move to rescind the military vaccine mandate through the National Defense Authorization Act "a mistake." The inclusion of the mandate's removal in the annual military defense policy bill was a major concession from congressional Democrats. pic.twitter.com/21geJwGd16
— Newsweek (@Newsweek) December 7, 2022