President Joe Biden said police officers and first responders should be fired from their jobs for refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccines.
During a town hall discussion with CNN on Thursday night, host Anderson Cooper said that as many as one in three police officers and first responders in major cities like Chicago, Los Angeles and Baltimore are refusing to comply with their city’s vaccine mandates. Asked whether those first responders should be mandated to get the vaccines and fired if they don’t, Biden replied, “yes and yes.”
“By the way, I waited until July to talk about mandating, because I tried everything else possible,” Biden added. “The mandates are working. All the stuff about people leaving and people getting … you have everyone from United Airlines to Spirit — all these airlines. They’re — we’re not going to get all — 96, 97 percent of the people have gotten the vaccine. All the talk about all these folks who are going to leave the military if they were mandated — not true. You got about a 90-something percent vaccination rate.”
Biden then went on to criticize those citing concerns about personal freedoms in refusing the vaccine.
“So there’s a — the idea is that — look, the two things that concern me — one, are those who just tried to make this a political issue,” Biden said. “Freedom. ‘I have the freedom to kill you with my COVID.’ No, I mean, come on. Freedom? Number one.
“Number two — the second one is that, you know, the gross misinformation that’s out there. Like what they’re saying about my buddy Colin Powell — and he was my friend — who passed away. ‘Colin Powell was vaccinated, and he still died.’ Well, he knew he had serious underlying conditions. And it would be difficult — he clearly would have been gone earlier had he not gotten the vaccine, had he not gotten the — the shots. But my generic point is: There’s so much misinformation.”
In August, within days of the FDA’s approval for the Pfizer-developed Cominarty vaccine, Biden ordered a vaccine mandate across the U.S. military.
In September, Biden announced a further vaccine mandate for federal employees and contractors and announced the U.S. Department of Labor is developing a new regulatory plan wherein all businesses with 100 or more employees would be required to get vaccinated or face weekly COVID tests or penalties of up to $14,000 per violation.
Two dozen Republican states attorneys general have threatened to sue the Biden administration over the mandates, Fox News reported.