Group of Iowa House Republicans to put forward anti-vaccine mandate bill

Politics

DES MOINES, Iowa — Some Republicans in the Iowa House of Representatives want to propose a bill at the start of the legislative session aimed at stopping employers from requiring COVID-19 vaccines.

Republican House legislators Jon Jacobsen and Mark Cisneros are behind the idea. The bill would prohibit a business or a person from gaining access to an individual’s medical treatment status, including vaccinations. Businesses in the state would also not be able to require people to wear masks.

This means that no one could be denied goods or services based on wearing a mask or their vaccination status. This also takes into account employment considerations, which some industries have implemented already such as hospitals.

However, there are other issues that are more prominent for Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds at the start of the legislative session. The U.S. Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments this week on the Biden administration’s vaccine-or-test mandate. Reynolds told reporters last week that she wants to wait on how the courts handled it before tackling mandates. But her opinion on mandates is clear.

“It has not been helpful for the mixed messaging that has come out of this administration,” Reynolds said. “That has not been helpful through any of this. Mandates don’t work, it digs people in.”

Iowa House Speaker Pat Grassley agreed with the governor on Tuesday about waiting on how the court cases pan out at the federal level.

“We have already made sure that we did as much as we could when it comes to the exemptions,” said Grassley. “But I also think that the legislature should not try to get in front and complicate the court cases that we are seeing work through the process. But if we need to step in, then I think the legislature should stand ready and approve to that.”

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