Rep. Mark Green (R-TN) said it would be against the law for Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to make COVID vaccines mandatory for American troops before they were approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Green told Breitbart News exclusively on Friday that he sent a letter to Austin to warn the official against the illegal move:
“I wrote the letter because of a concern that the executive branch is somehow going to operate outside of the laws written by Congress. And they can’t just decide that they’re going to disregard the law,” said Green, an Army combat veteran and a physician.
“It’s time for Congress to stand up to the executive branch’s abuse and violation of the law. And so I wrote the letter basically to say this is an illegal act and the courts have supported the law,” he added.
This news bulletin comes as talk of a potential mandatory vaccination status has begun to swirl in multiple spheres, including education, government, and the military.
Fox News and CNN reported on Wednesday that Austin would send a recommendation to Biden to make the vaccines mandatory for military members.
However, some of questioned whether President Joe Biden will offer a presidential waver to push the vaccine past the legal hurdles that it would need to cross to be required by all military members.
According to Green, the president can only offer the waiver for a product not approved by the FDA if they do so in connection with members’ participation in a “particular military operation.”
The former combat veteran pointed to 10 U.S. Code § 1107, which states:
(3)The Secretary of Defense may request the President to waive the prior consent requirement with respect to the administration of an investigational new drug or a drug unapproved for its applied use to a member of the armed forces in connection with the member’s participation in a particular military operation.
“Right now what they’re talking about — a blanket mandate for all of DOD — is not in accordance with the law,” he said. “If you just excuse the executive branch breaking the law, then what’s next?”
The representative went on to say that the whole point of the way the military was structure was so that it would be “second to the civilian control and the laws of the land so we wouldn’t have the president, through his military, act outside the laws written by Congress.
“It just goes to the very foundation of who we are as a country. You can’t break the laws as the secretary of defense. That’s going down a path that we can’t go down as a country.”
Fifteen other Republicans joined Green in signing the letter, including four who are physicians. Included on the list are Reps. Stephanie Bice (OK), Jack Bergman (MI), Warren Davidson (OH), Barry Moore (AL), Jim Baird (IN), Mariannette Miller-Meeks (IA), Scott DesJarlais (TN), Buddy Carter (GA), Michael Burgess (TX), Claudia Tenney (NY), Brian Babin (TX), Greg Murphy (NC), Randy Weber (TX), Michael Guest (MS), and Dan Bishop (NC).