The Florida legislature may not consider banning President Biden’s vaccine mandate on businesses with over 100 employees, a document released Thursday by Gov. Ron DeSantis’s (R) office revealed.
Though DeSantis’ document proposes employees be given certain social net benefits upon being fired for noncompliance with the mandate, the document omits any reference to considering the annulment of Biden’s direct mandate. It was previously thought that DeSantis’ announcement would include the banning of the vaccine mandate, but no such direct or indirect reference seems to have been made about the mandate itself:
Office of Florida @GovRonDeSantis releases fact sheet after call for special session to ban vaccine mandates.
— Jim Rosica (@JimRosicaFL) October 21, 2021
DeSantis also did not mention banning Biden’s mandate in his speech Thursday. “We’re going to make sure those are not for cause and make sure we provide people a lifeline, but at the end of the day, you shouldn’t be discriminated against based on your health decisions,” he said, speaking about how the state could help employees after they are terminated.
“And so we want to provide protection for people. We want to make it clear that in Florida, your right to earn a living is not contingent upon whatever choices you’re making in terms of these injections, and I think that’s going to go a long way to let people know that we have your back,” he said.
GOP leaders did not indicate they would consider blocking the mandate altogether.
“In the coming days, we will review the Governor’s specific proposals as well as discuss our own ideas for legislative actions,” Republican Florida House Speaker Chris Sprowls (R) and President of the Florida Senate Wilton Simpson (R) announced. “Florida will respond to this gross overreach by the federal government,” they added.
— Chris Sprowls (@ChrisSprowls) October 21, 2021
Politico reported Thursday, however, that DeSantis plans to sue the federal government over rules being prepared by U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which will be responsible for enforcing Biden’s vaccine mandate. Combatting those unwritten rules will not be the purpose of Florida’s special session.
Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody (R), speaking next to DeSantis Thursday, said she “will continue to push back in court.”
“Think about it. We are in the United States of America, the free states of America, and we have folks having to upload documentation into databases because of the mandates of this federal government. It will not be tolerated in Florida or accepted,” she added.
As the legislative session begins, it should be noted Republicans have controlled the Florida legislature and governorship for 22 years since 1999.
Follow Wendell Husebø on Twitter @WendellHusebø