Commentary

 By Kipp Jones  October 2, 2021 at 1:44pm

State lawmakers in Arkansas are attempting to take some of the teeth out of President Joe Biden’s burdensome vaccine mandate for private businesses by providing some loopholes for workers through proposed legislation.

Biden last month demanded that all companies nationwide with more than 100 employees require a COVID vaccine as a condition of employment. He threatened to use the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to impose harsh fines.

While Republicans nationwide, in opposition to the mandate, attempt to find their footing to fight the unprecedented mandate for private companies, Arkansas Republicans are attempting to throw out a lifeline for those in the state who don’t want or don’t need the vaccine.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported that the state Republican Party, which holds majorities in both the state Senate and House, is working on bills which would exempt workers who can prove they have natural immunity following a COVID infection — ignoring the politicized Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which advises against antibody testing for natural immunity.

Those willing to submit to regular COVID tests would also be able to navigate around the mandate, according to the report.

“This is what we felt we could get through to give employees some protection,” Republican state Sen. Kim Hammer said.

The Democrat-Gazette reported both chambers of the Arkansas General Assembly, and their respective public health committees, have embraced an identical bill to ease the burden for people who face losing their job if they refuse Biden’s mandate.

The legislation would offer a way for employees to opt-out, and also would make people fired for refusing a vaccine eligible for unemployment benefits — which is something the far left in the country seems largely against. That bill is one of the numerous pieces of legislation proposed in relation to the vaccine mandate.

Often in favor of government programs which pay people not to work, leftists have suddenly become opponents of unemployment benefits for people who might face hardships for refusing to be told what to put into their own bodies.

Look at these compassionate liberals:

And when someone quits or is terminated for not get a vaccine I hope this means they were fired for cause and are therefore ineligible for unemployment. They don’t deserve it.

— Cheryl Smith (@mscheryl58) September 29, 2021

If you’re fired for refusing to take the vaccine, you don’t deserve unemployment benefits. You quit.

— Milquetoast (@BlueRobotDesign) September 17, 2021

If you lose your job cause you refuse to get the vaccine you don’t deserve unemployment

— Riley Stone (@RileyStone420) September 15, 2021

If Arkansas Republicans get their way, people fired over an overreaching mandate won’t be out on the street. But unfortunately for Natural State residents who do face being put out over a mandate from Washington, GOP Gov. Asa Hutchinson doesn’t appear to support the bills currently in committee.

The Republican said he was not in favor of lawmakers using time during the legislative session to focus on protecting state workers and their jobs.

Do you think more Republican-majority states will follow Arkansas’ lead?

“To use [the extended session] as a means to bootstrap yourself into a whole host of other issues doesn’t make sense to me and it doesn’t seem to fit within the constitution,” Hutchinson told the Democrat-Gazette.

The governor said he hasn’t read any of the bills, and would rather the state legislature focus on redistricting following the release of the 2020 Census. Surely, if a bill passes with overwhelming support to give Arkansas workers a reprieve from Biden’s mad power grab, Hutchinson will jump aboard.

In any event, people nationwide are reeling from a historic mandate from the White House, and in places like New York, they’re losing their jobs and being denied unemployment benefits, the U.K.’s Daily Mail reported.

In Arkansas, the people with the power to oppose draconian mandates and their effect on working people are setting their noses to the grindstone.

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Johnathan “Kipp” Jones has worked as a reporter, an editor and a producer in radio, television and digital media. He is a proud husband and father.

Johnathan “Kipp” Jones has worked as an editor and producer in radio and television. He is a proud husband and father.

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