UPDATED 5:41 PM PT – Thursday, July 29, 2021
The Delta variant has caused a spike in COVID-19 cases across the U.S. In response, Joe Biden announced new initiatives on Thursday in an effort to get more Americans vaccinated.
The Democrat has urged states to utilize pandemic funds to give $100 to anyone who receives the vaccine. He also controversially stated that federal employees would need to get vaccinated or face repeated COVID tests.
“Every federal government employee will be asked to attest to their vaccination status,” said Biden. “Anyone who does not attest or is not vaccinated, will be required to wear a mask no matter where they work, test one or two times a week to see if they have acquired COVID, socially distance and generally will not be allowed to travel for work.”
The Delta variant is different than what we’ve dealt with previously. It’s highly transmissible and causing a new wave of cases. But here’s the good news: we have the power to stop it. Get vaccinated — and let’s defeat this virus once and for all.
— President Biden (@POTUS) July 29, 2021
Additionally, Biden threatened companies with the removal of the federal government’s business if they didn’t vaccinate their employees. Many GOP lawmakers have disagreed with Biden’s tactic to try and force Americans to get inoculated and said they should be given the freedom to decide whether to get the vaccine or not.
Meanwhile, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) said scaring Americans into getting the vaccine isn’t going to have a positive outcome, but said the data is strong for vaccine efficacy in combating case upticks, especially for elderly citizens. This comes a day after republican Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas) introduced two amendments to prevent the federal government from enforcing a vaccine passport system.