Tester and Daines Agree and Disagree on Vaccination Mandates
Montana Senators Jon Tester and Steve Daines agree to disagree on which group of workers should be under a mandatory COVID 19 vaccination mandate.
Senator Daines said he supports vaccination, but strongly opposes any kind of mandates.
“Since the beginning of the pandemic, I've been a strong supporter of getting the vaccine,” said Senator Daines. “I've encouraged Montanans to talk with their doctor about getting the shot, and I'll continue to do so. But while I'm pro vaccine, I'm strongly anti mandate. President Biden's overreaching COVID-19 vaccine mandates are a threat. They're a threat to Montana's small businesses and their workers. Montanans are very concerned about the impacts of Biden's mandates on their small businesses and their jobs.”
Daines was ebullient on Thursday morning when Congress agreed to oppose the mandatory vaccination of federal and contract workers.
“Today, the U.S. Senate passed my effort to strike down Biden's vaccine mandate on private businesses, which is good news,” he said. “I'm glad that Senator Tester joined me in my effort to repeal just one of Biden's mandates. However, there's a lot more work to do. He needs to join me in the fight against all of Biden's vaccine mandates not just for private businesses, but for healthcare workers, our federal contractors and our federal employees.”
Senator Tester, appearing on the Neil Cavuto show on Fox News, agreed that vaccinations are vital in bringing the pandemic under control.
“I've been vaccinated,” said Senator Tester. “My family has been vaccinated. My entire staff has been vaccinated. I believe that people need to go out and get vaccinated. But in the end, I've heard a lot from my businesses in the state of Montana, and they've told me that it's put them in a heck of a bind, and so I think they should have some relief.”
The disagreement between the two Senators is over the mandate by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid requiring all healthcare workers at facilities that receive reimbursement from Medicare and Medicaid to be vaccinated or lose their funding.
“On the other side, there are the health care folks who need to get vaccinated,” he said. “I'm not opposed to that at all. In fact, I think it's the right thing to do. We've got a shortage of nurses right now and a shortage of doctors in Montana and throughout the country, and so if we're going to have these folks potentially end up getting sick or worse, it's important they get vaccinated. Besides that they're dealing with a high risk population in a lot of cases that can't afford to get this virus.”
The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri and United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana issued preliminary injunctions against the implementation and enforcement of the Interim Final Rule against Medicare and Medicaid-certified providers and suppliers.