Update: The military mandate is repealed, and the nearly $900 billion NDAA has passed.
Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who is looking to become Speaker of the House, said he reached a bipartisan agreement to repeal the coronavirus mandate for the military as part of the $817 billion National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA.
Austin is opposed to a repeal. He said he wants to keep it for military health.
Congress may consider legislation this coming week to repeal the mandate as a requirement to gather enough support to pass this year’s defense budget, which is already two months late.
Austin said he would not comment on pressure from the Hill.
“We lost a million people to this virus,” Austin told reporters traveling with him Saturday. “A million people died in the United States of America. We lost hundreds in DOD. So this mandate has kept people healthy.”
“I’m the guy” who ordered the military to require the vaccine, Austin added. “I support continuation of vaccinating the troops.”
The medical reality and recent studies do not back up keeping the mandate.
Reuters reports, “McCarthy said it would be repealed as part of the must-pass $817 billion National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, an annual bill setting policy for the Pentagon that is expected to pass the Senate and House of Representatives this month.”
Even though Austin is opposed and Biden is only considering a repeal, McCarthy seems confident he’ll get it.
“I know I’m going to get that,” McCarthy said. “We’re working it out right now. I believe we’re … going to get that.”
I’d rather see them fight to get the military who were fired brought back.
If they didn’t give up too much, it would be a relief to have them repeal it. The vaccine mandate should have been gone a long time ago.
There is $800 million for Ukraine. They put money for Ukraine in several budgets.