Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) announced on Oct. 28 that he has issued an executive order to protect the individual rights of his state’s citizens against “overreaching” COVID-19 vaccine mandates from the Biden administration.
“As the Governor of the State of Missouri, I stand with concerned Missourians and will do all I can to stop federal COVID-19 vaccine mandates,” Parson said in a statement.
“When President Biden announced his initial plans to force unconstitutional vaccine mandates, we immediately began aligning state resources for legal action. While we hoped the Biden Administration would recognize these mandates as the abuse of authority that they are, they have not, and we must now use every tool we have available to fight this federal intrusion,” he said.
Parson argued that the federal government does not hold the authority to require that people receive a COVID-19 vaccine. He called the Biden administration’s attempt to do so a “power grab.”
“The Constitution and its historical interpretations clearly leave public health decisions to the states. The federal government has no authority to issue COVID-19 vaccine mandates. The Biden Administration acting alone to dictate and mandate health requirements represents the kind of federal power grab the founding fathers warned us against,” Parson said.
Executive Order 21-10 includes three specific areas of attention, according to the governor:
- All agencies, boards, commissions, and other entities within the executive branch of state government are directed to cooperate fully and timely with the Attorney General of the State of Missouri in litigation on behalf of the State of Missouri against any federally imposed COVID-19 vaccine mandate or requirement.
- No agency, board, commission, or other entity within the executive branch of state government shall compel any individual to receive the COVID-19 vaccine according to federal vaccine mandates if the individual objects for religious or medical reasons.
- No agency, board, commission, or other entity within the executive branch of state government shall penalize individuals or businesses for non-compliance with federally imposed COVID-19 vaccine mandates if the individual objects for religious or medical reasons.
Parson’s executive order adds to a growing number of governors seeking to stop the enforcement of COVID-19 vaccine mandates through executive order.
Last week, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R) issued her own executive order against the mandates.
Ivey’s written statement released with the Oct. 25 order declared that the vaccine mandates were “outrageous overreach.”
“The federal government’s outrageous overreach has simply given us no other option, but to begin taking action, which is why I am issuing this executive order to fight these egregious COVID-19 vaccine mandates. Alabamians—and Americans alike—should and must have the choice to roll up their sleeves to get this shot and certainly not forced by government,” Ivey wrote.
“While President Biden laughs at the idea of protecting your freedoms, I will continue fighting for Alabama businesses and their employees,” the governor added.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) also signed an executive order banning “any entity” in Texas from enforcing a COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
Florida’s Ron DeSantis is also among the Republican governors who are joining efforts to oppose the vaccine mandates in their state. DeSantis has called a special session of state lawmakers to consider a bill to oppose mandates in Florida.