Oklahoma representative files bill to ban vaccine mandates in state

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An Oklahoma lawmaker has filed a bill that will aim to ban any COVID-19 vaccine mandate in the state. 

State Rep. Tom Gann, R-Inola, filed House Bill 1003X, nicknamed the “Liberty Bill,” this week to end what he calls “shocking abuse” after receiving “numerous” calls from constituents who face loss of employment due to vaccine mandates. 

Oklahoma dtate Rep. Tom Gann, R-Inola.

“Following Oklahoma’s successful, landmark opioid settlement against the drug makers, it’s inconceivable that any employer would ask employees to subject themselves to an EUA injection from that same industry,” Gann said. 

Gann has echoed the familiar argument that the vaccine has not received full approval and remains available as part of the Emergency Use Authorization. The Pfizer vaccine has received approval from the Federal Drug Administration (FDA), but it may not be widely available just yet. 

Samantha Ervin, left, a pharmacist at the Upper Tanana Health Center, administers the second COVID-19 vaccine shot to Maggie Roach Thursday, Sept. 23, 2021, in Tok, Alaska. Roach was at first hesitant to get the vaccine but changed her mind after contracting COVID-19 and nearly dying from it last summer. She now encourages other to consider getting vaccinated if they haven’t. That’s what she and her husband did.
(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

The “Liberty Bill” copies an Illinois law that would protect employees who resist forced drug injection, KTUL reported. 

“When this abuse is taking place in the state of Oklahoma, we have to stand up and protect the individual liberty,” Gann said in a statement. 

Gann was one of a number of Republican state legislators who signed a letter to Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt in July of this year requesting executive action to prohibit vaccine mandates for state healthcare workers, KFOR reported. 

“These employees are the heroes that stood on the front line of the pandemic caring for those that had fallen ill to COVID-19. The quickest and most effective way to protect these workers is an executive order prohibiting these mandates,” the letter, signed by 20 representatives, read. 

President Biden issued a vaccine mandate that would require employees at any company consisting of 100 workers or more to have received at least the first shot of a COVID-19 vaccine regimen by Jan. 4, 2022, or face weekly testing and mask-wearing. 

A federal judge blocked the mandate on Saturday. 

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