Governor Kevin Stitt and Attorney General John O'Connor are fighting back and sharing a common goal to stop the Biden administration from imposing COVID-19 vaccine mandates on Oklahomans and entities throughout the state.
"President Biden doesn't trust Americans to make decisions for themselves,” said Stitt. "The decision to take a COVID vaccine should be made by Oklahomans and their doctors. Not their bosses and certainly not the federal government.”
On Tuesday morning, the Governor, Attorney General and business leaders all spoke out against several mandates handed down by the federal government.
The rules, some of which have already been enjoined in federal courts, range mandates on healthcare workers, federal contractors, private businesses and the National Guard.
All of those mandates are what O'Connor is suing over, as he told News On 6 yesterday in Tulsa.
"The reason for all five of our lawsuits really is that the rights and liberties belong in the individual,” said O’Connor.
Both O'Connor and Stitt, a former CEO, are also outspoken about what mandates could mean for employers and the economy.
Dana Weber is the CEO of Webco Industries in the Tulsa area.
"We believe that the federal government does not know what's best for us out here in Oklahoma,” said Weber. “Particularly in the rural parts of Oklahoma. And we believe that our employees need the rights to make those decisions for themselves."
Weber says if a mandate on private businesses goes through, which also includes the option for weekly testing for non-vaccinated employees, she'll still lose about 20 percent of her workforce.
Some critics of this have questioned the price tag for all of these lawsuits.
The legislature passed House Bill 1236 earlier this year that set aside $10 million for it.
O'Connor says they haven't spent all of the money yet.