Blackburn And Marshall Discuss Biden's Unconstitutional COVID Vaccine Mandates

November 5, 2021

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) is joined by Senator Roger Marshall (R-Kansas) on the floor of the U.S. Senate to discuss the Biden COVID vaccine mandates affecting Americans across the country.

To watch Senator Blackburn’s speech, click below or here.

You can read the transcript below or in the Congressional Record.

Madam President, it is no secret that President 

Biden's COVID-19 vaccine mandates have drawn major opposition here in 

the Senate.My Republican colleagues and I have introduced multiple 

pieces of legislation that chip away at the various impractical, 

unethical, and downright unconstitutional aspects of this latest power 

Grab.  Last week, I introduced the Keeping our COVID-19 Heroes Employed Act, 

which would pull essential workers out from under these mandates and 

stop the White House from unilaterally firing them for refusing to 

submit to a shot. Think about how ludicrous that is. This, of course, 

is the heart of the issue.


These pieces of legislation are not anti-vaccine. In fact, our 

opposition isn't about vaccines at all. I have been vaccinated, and I 

encourage people to talk to their physicians. This is all about the 

precedent the Biden administration is trying to set; namely, that it is acceptable for the Federal Government to stand between a patient and  their doctor and to overrule science and personal choice in the name of  their personal political agenda.

I think my colleague Senator Marshall knows a thing or two about 

preserving the importance of that doctor-patient relationship. Is that correct, Senator?

Mr. MARSHALL. It is, indeed. Thank you so much, the senior Senator 

from Tennessee, for asking me about something so near and dear to my 

heart--the patient-physician relationship. I just want to start my remarks by saying that I support the vaccine. I support the vaccine, but I also support an individual's right to 

decide whether he wants the vaccine or not. That is why I think it is 

so important to have this patient-physician relationship.

I had the duty and the honor to treat thousands of women with a 

virus. I learned very quickly that the same virus could cause different 

problems for different patients, and it was based on their previous 

medical histories and their underlying medical problems as to what my 

advice might be.


What my concern today is, is that so many of these heroes of 

yesterday, the COVID-19 heroes of yesterday, are now being treated so 

poorly. They are being told to get the jab or else lose their jobs. 

This mandate is going to lead to unemployment. It is going to lead to 

more inflation and further disrupt our supply chain. I just wish I 

could paint a face of all of these people from Kansas who are reaching 

out to me, saying: Please don't make me make this choice between the 

jab or my job.


I think of the nurses whom I worked with in Liberal, KS, when the ICU 

was overflowing. I think of the nuclear engineer folks and the union 

workers at Wolf Creek Nuclear energy who kept our electricity on. I 

think of those union workers who work for the Department of Defense 

contracts in the aerospace industry, and now they are being kicked in 

the face. They are being told that they are no longer essential, that 

they are no longer heroes.


Senator Blackburn, I am supposing there are heroes in Tennessee who 

are now being forgotten as well.


Yes, indeed. You are correct, Senator Marshall.


As I have said before, Tennessee is a supply chain and logistic 

State: shipping, transportation, manufacturing. These are things that 

help form the backbone of our economy, and those industries employ 

thousands upon thousands of people in our State.


I will tell you, these thousands of people are speaking up, just as 

you have said they are speaking up in Kansas. Every day, I hear from 

people who see what is happening on the ground, from small business 

owners to truckdrivers, and they are sounding the alarm bells. They 

know that Joe Biden's mandate will destroy their industries. They are 

just not asking for carve-outs; what they are saying is, give us a plan 

A, a plan B, a plan C; give us options. 

Senator Marshall, I believe you have taken a different approach to 

pushing back on some of these mandates.

Mr. MARSHALL. Well, thank you Senator. Indeed, there are more options 

out there. There are, indeed, more tools in the tool shed that we can 

use. We plan to oppose any efforts to enforce Joe Biden's vaccine 

mandate with all the other tools at our disposal, including blocking 

cloture on any continuing resolution in the absence of language 

protecting Americans from the mandates. In fact, 50 GOP Senators 

recently supported this as an amendment to the CR in September.

Senator Blackburn, I know that you also would be concerned about 

using any type of future funding to enforce this unconstitutional 


Yes, indeed, Senator. I am very concerned. The Biden administration has, indeed, weaponized the U.S. Government  against workers who love their jobs, against workers who are trying to 

earn a living and support their families. We have to stand up and 

defend them. Think about it. The Biden administration is using taxpayer 

dollars to implement a program designed to fire the very people we need 

to repair our supply chains, to bring manufacturing plants back online, 

and to keep the public safe.

Yes, our law enforcement officers are very concerned about this, but 

don't take my word for it. Ask some of these law enforcement unions. 

Ask the Fraternal Order of Police, the National Sheriffs' Association, 

and the National Border Patrol Council what will happen if these 

mandates force them to fire their unvaccinated agents and officers. 

They are waving red flags right now because these mandates aren't just 

impractical and unethical; they are dangerous. They will take these men 

and women off the frontlines and send them to the unemployment line and 

make us vulnerable.

Am I correct on this point, Senator Marshall?

Senator Blackburn, absolutely. I can't agree with you 


One of the big concerns I have is of our safety as well as our 

national security. I know that both Tennessee and Kansas have Army and 

National Guard units, and I have been told that perhaps half of the 

enlisted soldiers have not had their vaccines yet, and I encourage them 

to do that. But if they get separated from the military, it is going to 

leave a huge hole in our national security.

I am also concerned about those Active-Duty soldiers who are now 

being separated from the military as well for refusing the vaccine, and 

I am concerned about what is going to happen to their records going 

forward. I was so discouraged when I found out the White House 

suggested these soldiers get a dishonorable discharge.

In case you don't know what a ``dishonorable discharge'' means, you 

could be treated like a felon. You lose your VA benefits, and you may 

lose some of your Second Amendment rights and some of your voting 

rights as well.

Certainly, again, there is the impact on national security in losing 

thousands of our soldiers. 

Senator Blackburn, I am sure that you have so many people who are 

reaching out to you of the COVID-19 heroes of Tennessee. I appreciate 

your bringing this bill to the floor, and I am so happy and honored to 

support it.

Thank you, Senator.


I am appreciative to the Senator from Kansas and to all of my 

colleagues who have joined me on the floor today to fight this 

dangerous precedent set by these mandates.


I think it is so vitally important for my colleagues on the other 

side of the aisle to understand that the American people are not 

interested in playing chicken with Joe Biden--not at all. This isn't 

contrarian politics to them; this is a line in the sand between a 

power-hungry President who wants to strip them of their fundamental 

rights and get them fired from their jobs.