McCarthy takes smart stand on ending military vaccine mandate

Kevin McCarthy, Elise Stefanik, Steve Scalise
FILE – House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, of Calif., speaks during a news conference with members of the House Republican leadership, Nov. 15, 2022, after voting on top House Republican leadership positions, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., and Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., are at right. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File) Jacquelyn Martin/AP

McCarthy takes smart stand on ending military vaccine mandate

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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is going to have to make a lot of tough calls over the next two years if his conference elects him speaker next month. His decision to block the National Defense Authorization Act unless it includes an end to President Biden’s vaccine mandate is a good demonstration that he can make the right calls.

As much as conservatives may wish it were otherwise, there is an upper limit on what Republicans can accomplish with control of just the House of Representatives. They still don’t control the Senate let alone the White House.

This means that they should not get in the habit of overpromising on issues like the border. As long as Biden is president, the border will not be secure. There are some things Republicans can and should do on the border now that they have the House, like demanding more information on how many illegal immigrants are being released into the country every month, but expecting Biden to completely reverse himself on an issue so important to Democratic donors is unrealistic.

Going after the vaccine mandate makes more sense. For starters, the mandate is not necessary. COVID largely affects older and out-of-shape people. The active duty military are younger and in shape.

Second, it would help the armed services solve a recruitment problem. It would be a lot easier to find all the bodies the Army needs if it wasn’t kicking out thousands of soldiers who don’t want to take the vaccine at the same time.

Finally, it’s just good politics. Biden has said the COVID pandemic is over and Republicans should force him to apply that to his own policies.

Ending the military’s vaccine mandate is exactly the type of issue that both unifies Republicans and shows they can deliver real results for the American people.

Let’s hope McCarthy wins this one.

© 2022 Washington Examiner

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