The U.S. Senate on Wednesday passed a resolution, led by physician and GOP Sen. Roger Marshall (R-KS), to block the Biden administration’s vaccine mandate for most healthcare workers.
“Today is a huge victory for all the healthcare workers who ran to the sound of the COVID battle, as Senate Republicans joined forces taking us one step closer to invalidating President Biden’s overreaching and harmful CMS vaccine mandate,” Marshall said in an exclusive statement to Breitbart News following the Senate roll call vote.
I thank my Senate colleagues for joining me in voting to END the CMS vaccine mandate. I hope my colleagues in the House join us as well in voting to save thousands of healthcare jobs we simply can’t afford to lose. https://t.co/k2Z3z7EjWB
— Dr. Roger Marshall (@RogerMarshallMD) March 2, 2022
The resolution, officially named S.J.Res. 32, passed 49-44 and will head to the House for a vote. More than 30 GOP senators co-sponsored the resolution, which was introduced under the Congressional Review Act. The Congressional Review Act is “a tool that Congress may use to overturn rules issued by federal agencies,” and allowed the minority party to fast-track the vote.
49-44: Senate votes to block Biden Administration’s vaccine mandate for most health care workers. This congressional disapproval resolution by Kansas GOP Sen. Roger Marshall under the Congressional Review Act now heads to House. White House opposes it. pic.twitter.com/xXwjh8zzCz
— Craig Caplan (@CraigCaplan) March 2, 2022
The Biden administration announced both the OSHA mandate for large businesses and the CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) mandate for healthcare workers in November of 2021. The CMS mandate requires healthcare workers at facilities participating in Medicare and Medicaid to be fully vaccinated. The rule applies to more than 17 million workers at approximately 76,000 healthcare facilities nationwide and includes hospitals and long-term care facilities.
During his speech on the Senate floor, Marshall cited data showing the broad-sweeping consequences of President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate for health care workers, pointing to a poll which shows that roughly one in five healthcare workers quit their jobs since February 2020. He also referred to the American Nursing Association’s request to HHS Secretary Becerra urging the agency to declare the nursing shortage a national crisis.
“Nearly a third of the country’s 15,000 nursing homes reported a shortage of nurses or aides. Hospitals have been forced to recruit foreign nurses and National Guardsmen have had to fill in as nursing assistants to eases these problems. These shortages are particularly impactful in rural areas like much of my home state of Kansas,” said the senator, who notably has more than 25 years of experience as a medical doctor.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services acknowledges that there are currently “endemic staff shortages for all categories of employees at almost all kinds of healthcare providers and suppliers.”
Despite this acknowledgment, President Biden and his public health officials went forward with this vaccine mandate knowing it could lead to firings.
Firings like those we saw in New York when 33,000 health care workers were fired, retired, or place on unpaid leave because they chose not to abide by the state’s mandatory inoculation policy.
Marshall added that, as a physician, he is “confident the vaccine has saved lives,” but he believes mandating vaccination is unconstitutional.
GOP Senators led and passed a similar resolution 52-48 earlier this month against Biden’s OSHA mandate, in which Democrat Sens. Jon Tester (D-MT) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) voted with Republicans, The Hill reported. According to the publication, the White House has warned that it would veto both measures if the resolutions pass the House.
“Make no mistake, this federal vaccine mandate is not about public health or science – it’s about Joe Biden fulfilling his desire to control every aspect of our lives, and it’s a slap in the face to the hard-working men and women who never took a day off in the frontline fight against COVID-19,” Marshall continued in his statement to Breitbart News. “These workers are the true heroes of the pandemic and deserve our best fight and utmost respect.”
Katherine Hamilton is a political reporter for Breitbart News. You can follow her on Twitter.