Congressman Murphy expresses objection to vaccine mandates for U.S. Servicemembers


Congressman Greg Murphy (Greg Murphy’s website photo)

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Greg Murphy, M.D. (NC-03) has sent a letter to Secretary of the Defense Lloyd J. Austin in response to the Department of Defense’s decision to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine for U.S. servicemembers.

In the letter, Rep. Murphy addresses the clear operational readiness and national security concerns that would be present should the DOD relieve servicemembers of duty due to COVID vaccination status. Rep. Murphy’s office has received hundreds of calls, messages, and emails opposing vaccine mandates for U.S. military personnel.

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“While I am sympathetic to the premise of preventing our servicemembers from getting sick with COVID, relieving our patriotic and committed U.S. servicemembers because they desire not to be vaccinated is ethically troubling and could critically hinder our national security and readiness,” said Murphy. “Our servicemembers are heroes who risk so much to keep our nation safe at home and abroad. Fortunately, the vast majority of our military are at a low risk for COVID complications

“Congress must stand up for them. We have recently seen challenges to our military readiness and this action has the possibility of further exacerbating that problem. I was proud to send this letter to the Secretary of Defense urging the DOD to reconsider their vaccine mandate and put our servicemembers and our national security above political interests.”

In the letter, Rep. Murphy writes:

“As a member of Congress and a practicing physician of more than 30 years, I am deeply concerned about the Department of Defense’s decision to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine.

“I understand that noncompliance could result in the dismissal of thousands of exceptional, highly trained servicemembers just as our nation is having to confront a platitude of challenges on the global stage, most recently, the disastrous exit from Afghanistan and compounding threats from the Chinese Community Party, including their testing of new hypersonic missile systems.

“During a time of high stress as our servicemembers respond to crises throughout the world, it is reprehensible that our Department of Defense would consider relieving Marines, airmen, and soldiers who have made the choice to selflessly serve our nation in the Armed Forces simply because of COVID-19 vaccination status. I worry that dismissing or refusing to deploy unvaccinated servicemembers could critically impede operational readiness and undermine U.S. national security.

“It is also highly disturbing that servicemembers who do not receive the COVID-19 vaccine will not only be excused from their duties, but they could have to retroactively pay back any bonuses received for their service or lose additional benefits, regardless of any recent training they may have undergone.

“It is clear that the Biden Administration is putting political science above long-term national security interests. I implore you to reconsider the decision to take administrative or disciplinary action against those who do not receive the COVID-19 vaccine by the imposed deadline.

“I appreciate your careful consideration of my request as a matter of national security, and I look forward to your prompt reply.”

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