- Biden announced a new rule requiring large employers to make their workers get vaccinated or face weekly testing.
- “Are you people trying to start a full on revolt?” said Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw.
- “Those businesses should openly rebel against any such rule,” said Republican Rep. Chip Roy.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
President Joe Biden announced a sweeping new plan on Thursday to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly as the Delta variant drives a surge in cases among unvaccinated Americans.
But Republicans are taking issue in particular with a new rule that will require employers with more than 100 workers to mandate their workforce to be fully vaccinated or face weekly COVID-19 tests.
“Are you people trying to start a full on revolt?” wrote Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw of Texas on Twitter. “Leave people the hell alone. This is insanity.”
-Dan Crenshaw (@DanCrenshawTX) September 9, 2021
Others went even further, with Republican Rep. Chip Roy of Texas urging businesses affected by the rule to “openly rebel.”
-Chip Roy (@chiproytx) September 9, 2021
On the Senate side, Republican Sen. Rick Scott of Florida said he encouraged “America’s job creators – large and small – to challenge this insane ‘order,'” suggesting legal challenges ahead for the new OSHA rule.
-Rick Scott (@SenRickScott) September 9, 2021
And Republican Rep. Madison Cawthorn said, without further elaboration, that he would be filing a bill to “gut OSHA.”
-Rep. Madison Cawthorn (@RepCawthorn) September 9, 2021
In addition to the OSHA rule, Biden signed an executive order on Thursday mandating federal employees and contractors of federal agencies to get vaccinated without being able to opt out and get regular testing instead, which is more stringent than a requirement announced in June that allowed for weekly testing. The new mandate also comes after the US military required service members to get vaccinated.
“This is not about freedom or personal choice,” Biden said in a speech announcing the new measures. “It’s about protecting yourself and those around you.”
Other Republicans expressed their outrage in more general terms.
Republican Rep. Jim Banks of Louisiana simply tweeted a photo of the Gadsen flag – a symbol used by both libertarians and some white supremacists to channel anti-government sentiments.
-Jim Banks (@RepJimBanks) September 9, 2021
And Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said the new requirement was “flat-out un-American.”
-Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) September 9, 2021
Meanwhile, several Republican governors said they would seek to challenge the new requirements, including Govs. Brian Kemp of Georgia, Kristi Noem of South Dakota, Greg Abbott of Texas, and Doug Ducey of Arizona.
-Governor Kristi Noem (@govkristinoem) September 9, 2021