STATEWIDE — The argument over vaccines has become one that reflects the divide between the political parties in the United States.
Most Republicans are against President Biden’s executive order mandating that companies with more than 100 employees require COVID shots for workers, while most Democrats favor the president’s order.
“Anything that gets more people vaccinated, to me, is a good idea,” said Indiana Democratic Party chairman Mike Schmuhl on All Indiana Politics. “We are over 50-percent in terms of people in Indiana that have had both shots. To get that herd immunity, we need to get closer to 75-percent.”
Schmuhl is urging Gov. Eric Holcomb to take a more aggressive approach in pushing for people to get vaccinated.
Holcomb has called President Biden’s order “a step too far.” That thought process is loosely in line with what most state Republicans believe.
“If employers want to do it, that’s fine. We’ve been supportive of that. Employers should be allowed to do what they want,” said Indiana Republican Party chairman Kyle Hupfer. “But, to come in and try to mandate that from the federal government is a substantial overreach.”
Hupfer is also the general counsel for the Republican National Committee. He said that the party is pushing to take the federal government to court over the mandate. Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita has been among those who are threatening to lead the charge in court.
“I think that Attorney General Rokita sort of wakes up every morning wondering how he can cause trouble,” said Schmuhl of the lawsuit effort. “I think he’s more focused on his political future and sadly wasting taxpayer dollars with these frivolous lawsuits.”
Rokita and 23 other attorneys general across the U.S. said in a letter to the White House last Thursday that the mandate is “disastrous and counterproductive” and “amounts to an illegal use of the Occupational Safety and Health Act.”