- Former President Donald Trump railed against vaccine mandates at a rally in Texas on Saturday.
- He said service members were “cruelly and wrongfully terminated” over a vaccine mandate.
- The Pentagon said 98% of active-duty troops are vaccinated, but some who aren’t have been discharged.
If Republicans win back Congress this fall they should pass a law to rehire military service members who were discharged over the COVID-19 vaccine mandate, former President Donald Trump said at a rally in Conroe, Texas, on Saturday.
“Next year, a Republican Congress should pass a bill rehiring every single member of the military who was cruelly and wrongfully terminated by Joe Biden and his ridiculous COVID mandate,” Trump said as the crowd cheered. “And force the Pentagon to give these patriots an apology and full back pay.”
The Biden administration announced in August that vaccines would be mandated for service members. In December, the Pentagon said 98% of active-duty troops had been vaccinated, but that those who do not get it would face consequences.
Military branches began dismissing service members that month, NPR reported. The Associated Press reported Wednesday that the Marines have discharged 334 members, the Air Force has discharged 111, and the Navy has discharged 23. The Army has not yet discharged anyone over the vaccine.