Pence tears into Biden following vaccine mandate: ‘Unlike anything I’d ever heard’ from a US president

Former Vice President Mike Pence on Friday launched into President Joe Biden following a mandate that private companies with 100 or more workers require employees to be vaccinated for COVID-19.

“I have to tell you the president’s speech yesterday was unlike anything I had ever heard from an American president,” Pence said in an interview with “Fox & Friends.”

“I mean, to have the president of the United States say that he has been patient but his patience is wearing thin. That’s not how the American people expect to be spoken to by our elected leaders,” the former VP added.

During his address on Thursday, Biden blamed some 80 million Americans who are not vaccinated for the lingering pandemic, though he failed to mention that even some people who have gotten a vaccine are still contracting the virus.

“Many of us are frustrated with the nearly 80 million Americans who are still not vaccinated, even though the vaccine is safe, effective, and free,” said Biden.

(Video: Fox News)

“This is a pandemic of the unvaccinated. And it’s caused by the fact that despite America having an unprecedented and successful vaccination program, despite the fact that for almost five months free vaccines have been available in 80,000 different locations, we still have nearly 80 million Americans who have failed to get the shot,” Biden added.

Such language is unhelpful and divisive, Pence suggested, while pointing out that for much of last year during the campaign, both Biden and his running mate, then-Sen. Kamala Harris of California, dismissed vaccines out of hand because they were being developed under then-President Donald Trump.

Both of them accused the former president of rushing the development and approval of the vaccines for political gain ahead of the election, though the vaccine maker Pfizer waited until afterward to announce the breakthroughs after Trump had said for weeks they would be ready before the Nov. 3 Election Day.

“They spent the whole last year undermining public confidence in the vaccine,” Pence said.

“If and when the vaccine comes, it’s not likely to go through all the tests that need to be done, and the trials that are needed to be done,” Biden said a year ago last month.

Harris, meanwhile, said she would not take the vaccine on the word of Trump but only on the word of the country’s lead immunologist, Dr. Anthony Fauci. “If the public health professionals, if Dr. Fauci, if the doctors tell us that we should take it, I’ll be the first in line to take it, absolutely,” she said at the lone vice presidential debate in October.

“But if Donald Trump tells us that we should take it, I’m not taking it,” Harris added.

“If you remember my vice presidential debate, I called out Kamala Harris. I said you’ve got to stop playing politics with people’s lives,” Pence told “Fox & Friends.”

“Because she said she wouldn’t take a vaccine that President Trump had created,” he added.

Pence went on to rap Biden again for his heavy-handed approach with the mandate.

“We got governors across the country what they needed when they needed it, and we respected them to make the decisions best for their state. And now to have a president not just scolding the American people but scolding governors around the country, it just is not the American way. And I expect the response they are going to get across the country will prove that,” he said.

Several GOP governors have already said they will fight the mandate in court.

“Biden’s vaccine mandate is an assault on private businesses,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott noted. “Texas is already working to halt this power grab.”

Jon Dougherty

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