On Tuesday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R-Texas) filed a lawsuit against the administration of Joe Biden over the federal vaccine requirement for members of the National Guard.
As reported by CNN, Abbott’s lawsuit declares that the vaccine mandate for the Texas National Guard infringes on “Governor Abbott’s authority as Commander in Chief and on Texas’s sovereignty,” and that “it is unlawful for Defendants to attempt to override the Governor’s authority to govern his troops, and then leave him to deal with the harms that they leave in their wake.”
The lawsuit is in response to a policy implemented by an August memorandum from Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, declaring that all members of the American military must be vaccinated or else face discharge. Austin declared that the mandate would include non-federalized National Guard members, such as state National Guards, and that any states that defied the mandate would face a funding freeze or see members be prohibited from engaging in military duties.
Abbott’s lawsuit notes that over 220 members of the Texas Air National Guard, and roughly 40 percent of the Texas Army National Guard, are all refusing vaccinations for religious exemptions or other reasons.
“Because the Military Vaccine Mandate will lead to the loss of these Guardsmen from Governor Abbott’s command, and the State’s militia, the harm to the State is inevitable,” the lawsuit continued.
Abbott’s lawsuit follows a similar attempt by Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt (R-Okla.), who filed a lawsuit against Biden, Austin, and others in the administration back in December. But later in the same month, a federal judge ruled against the state of Oklahoma, claiming that the federal government was the final authority on all matters relating to the National Guard.