South Carolina leaders say they’re prepared to fight President Biden’s vaccine mandate

SOUTH CAROLINA — South Carolina leaders tell Channel 9 that they are prepared to fight President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate.

Thursday night, Biden announced he will require businesses with more than 100 employees to require employees to be vaccinated or to implement weekly COVID-19 tests.

The plan already drew criticism from Gov. Henry McMaster, who pledged to fight the mandate.

Congressperson Ralph Norman, who represent York and many other local counties, told Channel 9′s Tina Terry that the owners of large companies have been calling him about the mandate all day long.

“They are completely outraged over this. You got different people with different reasons ... whether religious, whether the vaccine hasn’t been on the market in their opinion long enough to see the long-term effects, and to have it mandated ... it violates our freedoms,” Norman said.

He said he’s prepared to stand up for business owners and employees who feel the mandate is unlawful. He said businesses could pool their resources and challenge the action.

“Lawsuits cost money. Hopefully we can ban together and get a class action suit going on a combination of suits that will not allow this to take place,” he said.

Biden said he welcomes the legal challenges.

“Have at it. Look, I am so disappointed that particularly some Republican governors have been so cavalier with the health of these kids; so cavalier, the health of their communities. We’re playing for real here. This isn’t a game,” Biden said Thursday.

Trina Hinton is one local worker who said people should have the right to choose whether or not they take the COVID-19 vaccine.

“I am employed by a big company and they have not mentioned anything to us about having to get the vaccine. It’s up to us whether we want to get the vaccine,” she said. “I think it’s fair, it’s everybody’s right ... it’s your right to get the vaccine or not.”

Alex Osborn, who also works for a large company, is hoping efforts to vaccinate more people are successful.

“I feel very strongly about it, because I think we’ve had a lot of time to know, to see if it’s safe and effective; and we’ve had a lot of time for people to get on board or not. I’m happy to see there’s more stringent options to keep people safe,” Osborn said.

Channel 9 asked a spokesperson for the attorney general if and when we could see legal action against the mandate. He said it’s too soon to say, and the office is currently studying the new mandate.

(Watch Below: Biden’s six-point plan: What you need to know)