Biden opposes dropping COVID vaccine mandate for military, Defense spokesperson says

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has called for the vaccine requirement to be lifted as part of the National Defense Authorization Act.

Updated: December 5, 2022 - 4:47pm

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President Joe Biden is opposed to dropping the COVID vaccine mandate for military members, according to Defense Department spokesperson John Kirby.

"He continues to believe that all Americans, including those in the armed forces, should be vaccinated and boosted for COVID-19," Kirby told reporters on Monday. "This remains very much a health and readiness issue for the force."

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin also wants the vaccine requirement to stay in place.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has called for the vaccine requirement to be lifted as part of the annual defense spending bill, formally referred to as the National Defense Authorization Act. The California Republican has said the NDAA "will not move" with the vaccine requirement in place.

"This is the first sign of having divided government, you've got some compromise here," he said.

Republican senators have also pushed for the vaccine requirement to be removed from the final NDAA.

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