April 22, 2024

Top GOP senator says 8,000 troops who went through ‘traumatic’ firing for refusing COVID vaccine over religious objections should be reinstated immediately

Senator slams the Biden administration for prioritizing ‘woke obsession’

Senator Lankford slams Biden for prioritizing ‘woke obsession’

Sen. James Lankford is criticizing the Biden administration for prioritizing a ‘woke’ agenda over protecting Americans’ First Amendment freedoms.

  • Over 8,000 troops were fired for refusing the COVID-19 vaccine mandate
  • Many service members who were seeking religious accommodation had their appeals denied or never heard back from their leadership regarding their application
  • The 2023 NDAA rescinded the Biden administration’s vaccine mandate, but challenges remain and military readiness is at an all-time low
  • Lankford said there is an ‘obsession’ in the military and within every Biden administration agency and U.S. embassies on pushing a ‘woke’ agenda 

Sen. James Lankford is criticizing the Biden administration for prioritizing a ‘woke‘ agenda over protecting Americans’ First Amendment freedoms and is pledging to reinstate service members who were fired for refusing the COVID-19 vaccine due to religious objections.

Since the Biden administration enacted a mandatory COVID-19 vaccine on troops in August 2021, over 8,000 service members have been fired for refusing the shot, many of whom sought religious or medical accommodations. 

After outrage by Congress, the Fiscal Year 2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), signed into law by President Biden last year, terminated his own vaccine mandate, but it did not reinstate service members who were fired for not receiving the shot

Lankford, R-Okla., told DailyMail.com during an exclusive interview Tuesday that he plans to prioritize getting fired troops back into the military and ensuring the Biden administration doesn’t further retaliate against religious service members.

The senator from Oklahoma said that he has heard from terminated service members who say they ‘want the ability to come back’ into the military’s fold. 

‘Many of these folks are generational individuals –  their parents served in the military, their grandparents served in the military, they planned to serve their whole career in the military and pass it on to their kids. And instead, because of their religious beliefs, they were pushed out of the military,’ Lankford told DailyMail.com.

He called it ‘obviously traumatic’ for them, and also a ‘shock’ because for generations, their families had been able to both live out their faith and serve in the military.

Now, you have a situation where ‘you’re fighting for other people to have the First Amendment, but you can’t have First Amendment protections,’ he said, which turns the Constitution on its head. 

‘They want the ability to be able to rejoin the military and to be able to finish their long and distinguished career. Individuals that literally had no other mark against their entire record in the military, other than you didn’t believe what President Biden did about the vaccine.’

‘Because your belief is not consistent with the president’s you can’t stay based on a religious belief that that just doesn’t align with where we are,’ he said.

The GOP senator pointed to other religious accommodations the military accepts including beard length for Muslims, and allowing individuals allowed to pray at certain times of the day.

‘All those things have been protected and can and should be protected still,’ he added.

‘So first things first, we’ve got to get those folks with the ability back to be able to rejoin the military.

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