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Speaker Lucas calls GOP colleagues to meet over Biden vaccination plan

Published: Sep. 10, 2021 at 6:29 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - The top state representative at the state capitol is calling his Republican allies to game plan.

House Speaker Rep. Jay Lucas (R - Darlington) published an open letter to the GOP House Caucus, writing President Joe Biden’s vaccination plan is unconstitutional.

In response to lagging vaccination rates and a surge in Delta variant cases, Biden’s plan requires federal workers and contractors to get vaccinated, with exceptions.

It also requires private companies with 100 or more workers to require their employees to be vaccinated or tested weekly. Employers must provide paid time off for workers to get the shot. Lucas said he and his family are vaccinated, and believes the vaccine works, but “I do not believe, however, that it is the responsibility of the government, at any level and least of all at the federal level, to decide for individuals if they will receive the vaccine.”In his letter, Lucas states he’s asked House Majority Leader Rep. Gary Simrill (R - York) to organize a Republican Caucus meeting in Columbia “as soon as possible.”

Simrill did not immediately return a request for comment.

Lucas asked the representatives to come with ideas and open minds, but it is unclear what action the caucus will take.

He laid out how the General Assembly would need a 2/3rds vote in both chambers to take on the issue. The letter does not address the issue of the budget mask rule, which several health and political leaders have called on him to act on.

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Lucas wrote he did make his office’s resources available to Governor Henry McMaster and Attorney General Alan Wilson for any legal challenge.

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