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Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas, a Republican, has once again proven his stalwart commitment to aiding the virus that causes COVID-19 in its goal of spreading as far as possible. Late Monday, the Republican state leader issued an executive order banning all entities in the state — including private businesses — from requiring employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19. (All other vaccine requirements remain untouched, because the “principled opposition” to vaccine mandates is an inch deep.)
As many folks who wish hypocrisy still mattered have pointed out, Abbott’s ban violates his party’s supposed commitment to a low regulatory environment for businesses by interfering with private businesses who wish to institute vaccine requirements. When it comes to the conflict between being pro-business and pro-virus, however, it was never any contest with Republicans. All other GOP principles fall before the newfound Republican commitment to making sure COVID-19 infects as many human bodies as it can.
Abbott, of course, did not admit that he was preventing businesses from enacting basic health and safety standards. Instead, he presented the ban as a defense of business, accusing President Joe Biden of “bullying many private entities into imposing COVID-19 vaccine mandates, causing workforce disruptions that threaten Texas’s continued recovery.” That’s is just a small taste of the doublespeak that the entire executive order is written in.
Amanda Marcotte is a senior politics writer at Salon and the author of “Troll Nation: How The Right Became Trump-Worshipping Monsters Set On Rat-F*cking Liberals, America, and Truth Itself.” Follow her on Twitter @AmandaMarcotte and sign up for her biweekly politics newsletter, Standing Room Only.