Tennessee State Representative Bruce Griffey (R-Paris) said this week that “history (and Tennessee voters) will not be kind (and will have harsh ridicule) for those in favor of [COVID-19] vaccine mandates.”
Griffey, in an emailed statement to the press, said, in his opinion, COVID-19 vaccines do not stop the spread of the virus. But also said state officials must give Tennesseans a choice and educate them about the vaccine’s effectiveness.
“In case anyone has not heard, Governor Abbott in Texas has banned all vaccine mandates in Texas per his EO. The Texas Legislature will take up the issue in a special session,” Griffey wrote.
“I’m not against vaccines, especially for older Tennesseans, those at greater risks due to personal health conditions, or anyone that voluntarily wants to take the vaccine. But I am vehemently opposed to vaccine mandates by government, employers or business owners in Tennessee. I am also very frustrated that we, today, apparently have a number of ‘medical Nazis’ in the Tennessee House and Senate that think it’s ok for some Tennesseans, (those with financial power via their business ownership or employment of other Tennesseans), to discriminate against fellow (powerless) Tennesseans by requiring vaccines by threatening them with the loss of their job and/or ability to conduct business.”
Griffey said this “is a threat by the financial elite against the poor’s ability to support their families!”
Griffey in August called for a special session of the Tennessee General Assembly. He said he wanted such a session to consider restraining Governor Bill Lee’s emergency powers.
Griffey said at the time that legislators should take up the governor’s authority to declare and extend public health emergencies. The governor can do this without oversight by the Tennessee General Assembly.
“In my opinion — and I have sent this text out to a number of folks and I’ve gotten a pretty good response — the governor should only have 30 days of emergency authorization. He ought to get the speaker and the lieutenant governor to sign off on it before he does it. Any time period past that then you ought to bring the General Assembly back into special session and consider an extension or if additional measures are required,” Griffey told The Tennessee Star in August.
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