Did President Joe Biden fire over 200 US Marines for refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccine?
Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!
Claim : Joe Biden Fired Over 200 Marines For Not Taking Vaccine!
People are claiming that President Joe Biden fired over 200 US Marines for refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccine!
Joe Biden fired over 200 Marines for refusing to take the COVID vaccine.
The claim is sometimes combined with a link to a news article on 206 US Marines being removed for refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccine.
Truth : Joe Biden Did NOT Fire Marines For Not Taking Vaccine!
This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS being created about President Joe Biden.
The truth is – he did NOT fire those US Marines for refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccine, and here are the reasons why…
Fact #1 : Vaccine Mandate Was Issued By Defense Secretary
The COVID-19 vaccine mandate was not issued by President Joe Biden.
In August 2021, US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin issued a mandate for all US military troops to receive their COVID-19 vaccinations.
Active duty Marines were given until November 28, 2021 to get vaccinated against COVID-19, while reservists had until December 28, 2021.
Fact #2 : Marines Were Removed By Marines Corps
After the deadline expired, the Marine Corps moved to remove Marines who refused to comply with the Pentagon’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
As of December 30, 2021, a total of 206 Marines were removed by the Marine Corps, but not President Joe Biden.
Captain Andrew R. Wood, a Marine Corps communication strategy officer confirmed this in an email, citing an October 2021 Marine Administrative Message:
Marines refusing the COVID-19 vaccination, absent an approved administrative or medical exemption, religious accommodation, or pending appeal shall be processed for administrative separation.
General Court-Martial Convening Authorities (GCMCA) retain authority to take any additional adverse administrative or disciplinary action they deem appropriate.
Fact #3 : President Biden Lacks Authority To Fire Marines
Not only did President Biden not issue the order to fire those Marines, he does not actually have the authority to make such decisions.
Troop disciplinary decisions are handled by the respective military services, not the President of the United States.
In a September 24, 2021 press briefing, Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby explained that “commanders at local levels will make these decisions based on what’s best for them and their units“.
Fact #4 : US Military Have Long Had Vaccine Mandates
US Armed Forces personnel have long been subject to mandatory vaccinations, to ensure they are protected against biological weapons, and preventable diseases in their deployment areas.
- Hepatits A
- Hepatitis B
- Influenza (Seasonal)
- Yellow Fever
The COVID-19 vaccination is just one addition to a list of mandatory vaccinations in the US military.
The refusal to comply with such lawful orders or regulations can result in a dishonourable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for two years.
Fact #5 : Dishonourable Discharge Barred Over Vaccine Mandate
The Biden Administration did earlier oppose a Pentagon proposal to remove dishonourable discharge as a disciplinary option for those who refuse to comply with the COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
However, President Joe Biden ultimately signed into law, a provision that bars dishonourable discharge for military troops who refuse the vaccine, as part of the National Defense Authorisation Act on December 28, 2021.
This provision calls for them to receive at least a general discharge, which would still entitle them to all VA benefits, but not the GI Bill education benefits.
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