Rep. Estes Introduces Legislation Protecting Individuals Against Vaccine Mandates Overreach
Washington, October 6, 2021 | Roman Rodriguez (316-262-8992)
WASHINGTON – Yesterday Rep. Ron Estes (R- Kansas) introduced H.R. 5480, Protecting Religious Exemptions from Vaccine Mandates Act, to protect individuals with deeply held religious beliefs from President Biden’s vaccine mandates. Along with his own legislation, Rep. Estes is also an original cosponsor on legislation introduced by Rep. Diana Harshbarger (R-Tennessee) that prohibits the federal government from requiring COVID-19 vaccines.
“I am proud to introduce legislation that protects individuals and their religious freedoms against overreaching federal mandates,” said Rep. Estes. “Biden’s shortsighted mandates are an attack on individual liberties and will escalate into a shortage of critical health care, law enforcement, education and other workers as employees are either terminated, resign or choose to retire. This legislation is not about the validity of the vaccine, but rather addressing gross government overreach and ways to prevent it in the future.”
In addition to these pieces of legislation, Rep. Estes joined a letter to President Biden urging for the suspension of his mandates. You can read the letter here.
On Sept. 9, 2021, President Biden announced that he would be imposing overreaching national COVID-19 vaccine mandates through the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA). These mandates require an estimated 4 million federal employees and contractors to be fully vaccinated along with mandating employers with over 100 employees to require full vaccination.
Under the legislation proposed by Rep. Estes, The Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 would extend to apply to rules issued by the Secretary of Labor. This would bar the Department of Labor from issuing an emergency temporary standard that requires an employer to ensure that employees receive a vaccine.