Empower Wisconsin | Sept. 10, 2021
By M.D. Kittle
MADISON — In the wake of President Biden’s sweeping — and constitutionally suspect — COVID-19 vaccination mandates, Wisconsin needs to know where Gov. Tony Evers stands.
The Democrat’s handlers didn’t immediately return Empower Wisconsin’s request for comment Friday, but we do have a sense of where Evers is headed.
Biden on Thursday announced mandatory vaccinations for all federal employees and contractors, shot mandates for workers at businesses with 100 or more employees, and mandatory paid time off for employees to get the injections. The president also called on governors to mandate vaccinations for all school employees.
Biden lambasted Americans who have opted not to get the shot, calling the latest surge in COVID-19 cases “a pandemic of the unvaccinated.”
“And it’s caused by the fact that despite America having [an] unprecedented and successful vaccination program, despite the fact that for almost five months, free vaccines have been available in more than 80,000 different locations, we still have nearly 80 million Americans who have failed to get the shot,” the president said.
While many of Evers’ fellow governors have publicly rebuked the president for his unconstitutional use of broad executive powers, it would appear from previous statements that Wisconsin’s liberal executive will follow the Democratic Party’s titular leader lock, stock and barrel.
Evers has for some time been mulling requiring COVID shots for state employees. State government workers had until Thursday to disclose whether they have been vaccinated or face disciplinary action.
And the governor appears all-in on vaccine mandates for teachers.
Just where he stands on the government forcing private-sector employees to get COVID shots isn’t entirely clear as of publication.
His peers elsewhere have made their objections clear, however.
RepublicanSouth Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster called Biden’s fiats a “war against capitalism.”
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, also a Republican, said he would pursue legal options available to the state of Georgia and called the plan a “blatantly unlawful overreach by the Biden administration.”
Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves said the President has “no authority to require that Americans inject themselves because of their employment at a private business.” While the Republican governor said the vaccine is “life-saving,” Biden’s “unconstitutional move is terrifying.”
Tennessee Republican Gov. Bill Lee on Twitter said the “heavy-handed mandates are the wrong approach.”
In Wisconsin, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Oshkosh) described the federal orders are an “outrageous trampling of civil liberties.”
“Today’s announcement by President Biden is a level of coercion that I find highly disturbing,” Johnson said in a statement. “His mandate for all federal employees, federal contractors and private sector employees to get vaccinated is a dangerous precedent for what a U.S. president can unilaterally impose on the American public.”
Sen. Johnson will join Empower Wisconsin at 3 p.m. this afternoon on the Vicki McKenna Show.
Former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, a Republican who just launched her campaign for governor, said, “Biden’s authoritarian actions are totally unconstitutional and more than a step too far. Wisconsin must join other states in a lawsuit demanding we put a stop to this madness. We must protect liberty.”
Even Evers’ leftist neighbor, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker thinks Biden’s mandates are a bridge too far.
“At the moment I don’t have a plan for us to do that, but I do think everyone should get vaccinated,” Pritzker said at an event in Chicago.
“We’re focused on the plan we have in place, which is requiring vaccinations, but for those who cannot, they have the option of testing, so we’ll look at it going forward.”