‘The Governor Of Texas Does Not Take Orders From The President’: Abbott Vows To Fight National Guard Vaccine Mandate
Texas Governor Greg Abbott speaks during the Houston Region Business Coalition's monthly meeting on October 27, 2021 in Houston, Texas.
Brandon Bell/Getty Images

Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott filed a preliminary injunction on Tuesday to urge the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas to protect the state’s National Guard members from the Biden Administration’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

The motion argues that President Joe Biden’s unconstitutional overreach seeks to undermine Abbott’s chain of command, blur the lines of accountability, and endanger millions of Texans.

“The Governor of Texas does not take orders from the President of the United States,” Abbott said in a statement.

“President Biden must be held accountable for his unconscionable willingness to hollow out the Texas National Guard with another illegal vaccine mandate. As the commander-in-chief of Texas’ militia, I will deploy every legal tool in defense of these American heroes,” he added.

Abbott previously announced in January his plans to sue the Biden administration over the National Guard vaccine mandate in his state.

“As commander-in-chief of Texas’ militia, I will not tolerate Biden’s efforts to compel Guardsmen to receive a COVID-19 vaccine,” Abbott wrote.

“That is why I am suing the Biden Admin. over its latest unconstitutional vaccine mandate,” he added.

In a letter sent in January Major General Tracy R. Norris, the Adjutant General of the Texas Military Department, Abbott told him not to punish Guard members who have chosen not to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

“As the commander-in-chief of Texas’s militia, I have issued a straightforward order to every member of the Texas National Guard within my chain of command: Do not punish any guardsman for choosing not to receive a COVID-19 vaccine,” the governor wrote in the letter.

“Although my order has been in effect for months now, President Biden has muddied the waters with a vaccine mandate from the U.S. Department of Defense. To clear up any confusion, this letter addresses all Texas guardsmen who are serving in a Title 32 status or a state active duty status,” he added.

In a statement released with the January letter, Abbott also placed the blame for the vaccine mandate squarely on Biden and the federal government.

“Unless President Biden federalizes the Texas National Guard in accordance with Title 10 of the U.S. Code, he is not your commander-in-chief under our federal or state Constitutions. And as long as I am your commander-in-chief, I will not tolerate efforts to compel receipt of a COVID-19 vaccine,” the governor wrote.

“Let me be crystal clear: It is the federal government that has put Texas’s guardsmen in this difficult position. As your commander-in-chief, I will fight on your behalf. That is why I am suing the Biden Administration over its latest unconstitutional vaccine mandate,” he added.

Abbott had previously sent a letter to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on December 16 to inform him that Texas will not impose the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate on members of the Texas National Guard.

As the Daily Wire previously reported, Abbott is not the only governor to push back at the Biden administration’s vaccine mandate for National Guard service members:

Abbott’s lawsuit comes just weeks after a failed effort by Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt to block the vaccine mandate for National Guard members. That lawsuit, which argued some of the same points that Abbott outlined in his letter, was dismissed by a federal judge last week.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  ‘The Governor Of Texas Does Not Take Orders From The President’: Abbott Vows To Fight National Guard Vaccine Mandate