House of Representatives

RELEASE: Rep. Jay Steagall Responds to Biden Vaccine Mandate

9/10/2021 2:11:00 PM

OKLAHOMA CITY – Rep. Jay Steagall, R-Yukon, Chair of the House States Rights Committee, today responded to President Joe Biden's remarks regarding a proposed COVID-19 vaccine mandate for American workers.

Biden announced the plan in a press conference yesterday, signaling that he will direct the U.S. Department of Labor to issue rules requiring businesses employing over 100 employees to mandate COVID-19 vaccinations or weekly COVID testing for their workers.

Steagall's full statement can be seen below:

Fellow Oklahomans and Americans,

I have written to you before, decrying the Biden Administration’s multiple acts of despotism and unceasing usurpation of undelegated power, and the most recent edict from the President is undoubtedly one of the most tyrannical assertions of unconstitutional federal overreach ever thrust upon our republic. It is repugnant to the provisions of the U.S. Constitution - particularly the separation of powers between Congress and the Executive branches, as well as those existing between the State and federal government - for the President to exert this type of unilateral overreach. President Biden evidently needs to be reminded that the “whole of government,” the power of our Constitution, resides with the People – exercised through their respective State, and is by no measure concentrated into the singular office of the President.

President Biden's dictatorial comments yesterday should be found offensive by every American, as there is no space nor refuge provided in our form of government for autocracy. The Oklahoma Legislature in conjunction with the Governor’s office, through the passage and implementation of HB1236, have reasserted the powers of the State, as prescribed in the Tenth Amendment. We are well-poised in Oklahoma to defend our citizens from such absurd federal overreach, and are prepared to take whatever appropriate actions are necessary to secure the rights of all Oklahomans.

I, along with Speaker of the House Charles McCall and many of our colleagues, applaud Oklahoma Attorney General John O’Connor for preparing to exercise our state powers. As the States Rights Committee Chairman in the Oklahoma House of Representatives, I will be actively soliciting the synergistic efforts of the several states to undertake the all-important task of exerting their proper respective powers as prescribed in the agreement with each other – the U.S. Constitution.