Raytheon Technologies Chief Executive Greg Hayes is the latest large business executive to voice concern regarding the impact President Biden’s vaccine mandate will have on employees.
Reuters reports that in a CNBC interview on Tuesday, Hayes said he expects to lose “several thousand people” from the Raytheon workforce due to President Biden’s vaccine mandate.
Hayes reportedly said that Raytheon would comply with the executive order, which goes into effect on Dec. 8.
Raytheon is a top U.S. Defense contractor specializing in aerospace defense systems, including advanced Tomahawk missile technology.
The Biden Administration’s decision to impose vaccine mandates on businesses that contract with the federal government or have more than 100 employees has been met with stiff opposition.
This week, Senator Tommy Tuberville (R-Alab.) sent an open letter to the White House expressing his concerns:
“I share your desire to see our country through the COVID-19 pandemic as quickly as possible,” Tuberville wrote. “And, I—like you—have elected to take the vaccine. But your administration’s mandate is short-sighted, ill-conceived, and threatens our national security.”
Tuberville asked the President “to remove—or, at a minimum, delay and clarify—vaccination requirements on private companies and academic research institutions that are actively supporting the Department of Defense.”
Roll Call reports that Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.), the top Republican on the Armed Services Committee, called for a repeal of vaccine mandates in a letter sent Monday to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.
In the letter, Inhofe reportedly expressed concern that vaccine mandates will negatively impact America’s military readiness.
The Roll Call article cited Pentagon figures indicating that about 400,000 troops have yet to receive a single dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
In protest of the mandate, approximately 100 workers at United Launch Alliance (a company with contracts with the Pentagon and NASA) walked out on Monday.
They join thousands of union workers, airline staff, first responders, and healthcare workers who have called in sick, walked off a job site, or resigned in recent days.
WAFF-58 in Decatur, IL reports that federal contractors working for United Launch Alliance are incensed over the looming vaccine mandate deadline, particularly because many requests for religious or medical exemptions were denied.
“I’m sick and tired of being walked on,” federal contractor Hunter Creger said in an interview. “I’m an American; my family has fought for this country. It feels like a birthright has been taken from me.”
Creger’s request for a religious exemption was denied.
“I’ve put in a lot of really hard work at this company and I really enjoy what I do,” Creger said. “This is my dream job, and I’m being fired over something that has nothing to do with my merit.”
South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster (R) reportedly responded to news of President Biden’s vaccine mandate by stating, “Rest assured, we will fight them to the gates of hell to protect the liberty and livelihood of every South Carolinian.”
A number of other governors joined in opposition to the vaccine mandate.
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp (R) declared, “I will pursue every legal option available to the state of Georgia to stop this blatantly unlawful overreach by the Biden administration.”
Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves (R) stated: “The President has no authority to require that Americans inject themselves because of their employment at a private business. The vaccine itself is life-saving, but this unconstitutional move is terrifying. This is still America, and we still believe in freedom from tyrants.”
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