By Senator Marsha Blackburn –
The Biden administration gave our servicemembers an ultimatum – get vaccinated or you will be fired. The White House insists that this latest mandate is about following the science, but their record on the issue betrays their true agenda. Joe Biden and the Democrats are doing all they can to use the pandemic to seize control over the way Americans live their lives.
Nationwide, approximately 13 percent of Army National Guard troops remain unvaccinated. That means the Biden administration’s COVID vaccine mandate could cut 60,000 Guard members and Reservists from benefits, pay, and service. Furthermore, reporting by the New York Post revealed that of the 3,000 Guard members and Reservists who requested a religious exemption, none have been granted one.
Biden’s Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin warned that the virus “takes our servicemembers out of the fight” making the country vulnerable. But the administration’s answer – to fire thousands of servicemembers – makes no sense at all. Why would they be willing to go to such extremes when the pandemic is over and we know that being vaccinated does not prohibit COVID infection? It’s simple – by doing so, they’re able to keep the “Forever Pandemic” alive and, by extension, their control over We the People.
What should concern us even more is how much they’re willing to sacrifice to expand their authority. Tennessee’s Guardsmen and women are heroes, securing the southern border and completing rescue missions after floods, tornados, and animal attacks. The Biden administration is threatening to bring those lifesaving missions to a screeching halt.
While servicemembers now have to wonder if they’ll be able to continue serving our country, America’s adversaries are looking to exploit this new vulnerability of fewer troops able to deploy and fight. Cartels are keeping close tabs on trafficking routes as troops may soon be forced to abandon the southern border, leaving miles of that border unprotected. Overseas, China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea are watching as our Commander in Chief destroys his own fighting force.
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In the U.S. Senate, I am stepping up to stop Joe Biden’s disastrous plan. On the Senate Armed Services Committee, I fought for key provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to ensure troops have the necessary resources to train, fight, and save lives. This month, I introduced the Stop Firing Our Servicemembers Act which would prohibit any taxpayer dollars from being used to enforce the COVID vaccine mandate.
Tennessee’s National Guardsmen and women deserve an outpouring of support and recognition from the White House, but Joe Biden has instead given them an ultimatum. While the left is consumed with their power grab, I am working tirelessly on Capitol Hill to stop them from keeping their “forever pandemic” alive at the expense of our armed forces.
About the Author: Marsha Blackburn is the senior United States Senator from Tennessee. A businesswoman, she is a member of the Republican Party. Blackburn was a state senator from 1999 to 2003 and represented Tennessee’s 7th congressional district in the U.S. House from 2003 to 2019. On November 6, 2018, she became the first woman to be elected to the U.S. Senate from Tennessee, defeating former Democratic Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen. She took over as the state’s senior senator in January 2021, when outgoing Senator Lamar Alexander retired. Follow Blackburn on Twitter @MarshaBlackburn and Facebook.