SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – Two of Utah’s top lawmakers say the legislature is prepared “to respond quickly with legislation” once the formal rules regarding private-sector employees getting the vaccine based on President Joe Biden’s plan. This comes just a day after Utah’s attorney general launched the state into a coalition threatening legal action over Biden’s vaccine mandate.
President Biden announced a six-pronged plan to combat the spread of the delta COVID-19 variant. Under the plan, businesses with more than 100 employees must mandate vaccines or regular testing. Workers in healthcare and education that receive federal funds must be vaccinated, as well as all federal employees and contractors.
Friday morning, Utah Speaker of the House Brad Wilson and Senate President J. Stuart Adams, both Republicans, released this statement:
“The President’s unilateral decision to force American businesses to mandate COVID-19 vaccines as a condition of employment grossly exceeds his authority. Not only is this mandate contrary to his previous promises, but this declaration violates the principles and processes that are the bedrock of good government. As elected officials, we will not turn a blind eye to this power grab and will do our part to uphold the principles of separation of powers and individual liberty.
“We reaffirm our continued support for the vaccination effort. Vaccines have proven to be the most effective measure we can take to reduce the strain on our hospitals and save lives. However, requiring employers to force these decisions upon their employees is not the proper role of government and should not become the new precedent.”
Adams and Wilson say the Utah Senate and House Majority Caucuses are not only supporting Attorney General Sean Reyes as he works in the 24 state coalition looking to pursue legal action against the federal government but are encouraging Governor Spencer Cox to reject the OSHA requirements.
For more on President Biden’s vaccine requirement and his six-pronged plan, click here.