While thousands of Texans face the prospect of losing their jobs under COVID vaccine mandates, Gov. Greg Abbott continues to avoid calling legislators back to Austin for a special session to address banning such mandates.
Now, a state lawmaker says the issue has “no support” from the governor.
In a Facebook exchange on Sunday, State Rep. Steve Toth (R–The Woodlands)—who has authored and supported numerous efforts to ban vaccine mandates—criticized Abbott’s timing in adding it to the third special session, which concluded last week, and his failure to call a fourth special session.
Toth was asked why the ban on vaccine mandates failed to pass the Legislature despite Republicans having control.
“[I]t was placed on the Call at the last minute and it has no support from the Governor,” responded Toth. “If the Governor was sincere we would have placed it on the call day one and if it didn’t pass he would [have] called us right back immediately.”
Toth has publicly called for a fourth special session to address vaccine mandates, as well as election audit legislation.
Since the Legislature left Austin last week, Abbott has said there is “no need” for lawmakers to return, stating his executive order seeking to ban vaccine mandates is sufficient. However, many businesses have thus far ignored Abbott’s order, with several large employers telling employees they will follow federal guidance.