Commerce Secretary Raimondo: Putting Off Vaccine Mandate Until After Holidays Would Be ‘Mistake’

Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said Sunday on CBS’s “Face the Nation” that it would be a “mistake” to put off federal work coronavirus vaccine mandates.

Partial transcript as follows:

BRENNAN: One of the things that you do hear complaints from- from retailers, from other people in the business sector is that the vaccine mandate- not a problem with the mandate per say, but claims that putting it in place at this time around the Christmas season will back everything up that they might have labor shortages as it comes to rolling this out at the White House. Jeff Zients, the vaccine czar so to speak, said there’s some flexibility around these deadlines that- that they’re not a cliff and the rules are being finalized soon. How soon do you need to push this off until after Christmas?

RAIMONDO: No, I think that would be a big mistake. People want to work in a workplace where they feel safe. You see, you know, United Airlines, that was among the first to do the mandate. Their- you know, number of folks applying for jobs is through the roof. The best thing we can do to get people back to work is to make sure everybody is vaccinated.

BRENNAN: Right–

RAIMONDO: So–

BRENNAN: But can you push that till after Christmas, you announced the rules–

RAIMONDO: It would be a mistake. It would be a mistake. You see, in the third quarter. You know, this year we’re on path to have the strongest GDP growth in decades. We had a blip in the third quarter. Why? Delta- Delta variant, the quicker everyone gets vaccinated, the better our economy will be back on track, the quicker everybody gets back to work.

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN

.

Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.