In a letter announcing the trial, Abbott also instructed members within his chain of command not to punish guard members who do not receive a vaccine.
SEE ALSO: 103 Marines discharged for refusing to take COVID vaccine
“Unless President Biden federalizes the Texas National Guard in accordance with Title 10 of the U.S. Code, he is not your commander-in-chief under our federal or state constitutions. And as long as I am your commander-in-chief, I will not tolerate efforts to force the receipt of a COVID. -19 vaccine, “reads Abbott’s letter.
Abbott continues: “Let me be crystal clear: It is the federal government that has put Texas’ guards in this difficult position. As your commander – in – chief, I will fight on your behalf. That is why I am suing the Biden administration over its latest unconstitutional vaccine mandate. . “
As Commander-in-Chief of the Texas Militia, I will not tolerate Biden’s efforts to force guards to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.
That’s why I’m suing Biden Admin. over its most recent unconstitutional vaccine mandate.
Read my entire letter: https://t.co/kt4prg1w4c
– Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) January 4, 2022
Last October, Abbott informed the more than 20,000 members of the Texas National Guard that they were included in his decrees banning any state entity from imposing vaccine mandates.
Texas has the largest National Guard contingent in any state and has not disclosed how many of its members have been vaccinated.
Despite railing against federal actions, Abbott’s state health officials appealed for federal assistance for increased COVID-19 testing and treatment, as a virus-boosting virus-driven variant has increased the number of cases.
Tuesday’s action also comes amid further pushback against the Department of Defense’s orders to vaccinate all members of the U.S. military.
A federal judge in Texas issued a preliminary injunction preventing the fleet from acting against 35 sailors for religious reasons for refusing to comply with an order to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin has repeatedly said that it is crucial to get the vaccine in order to maintain a healthy, clear force that can be prepared to defend the nation. He decided that guard members who refuse COVID-19 vaccinations will be excluded from federally funded exercises and training required to maintain their guard status.
SEE ALSO: US Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin tests positive for COVID-19
The Associated Press contributed to this story.
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