Southwest Airlines CEO says he doesn’t like mandates, blames Biden for forcing him to do it

The CEO of Southwest Airlines put the blame for their vaccine mandate squarely on Joe Biden this morning, telling CNBC that he doesn’t even like mandates:

CNBC – Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly told CNBC on Tuesday he believes businesses should not impose Covid vaccine mandates on their employees, but he said his company is doing so to comply with federal rules put in place by the Biden administration.

“I’ve never been in favor of corporations imposing that kind of a mandate. I’m not in favor that. Never have been,” Kelly said in an interview on “Squawk on the Street.” “But the executive order from President Biden mandates that all federal employees and then all federal contractors, which covers all the major airlines, have to have a [vaccine] mandate … in place by December the 8th, so we’re working through that.”

Southwest said last week that its 56,000-person workforce needed to be vaccinated against Covid by Dec. 8 in order to keep working at the airline under the federal mandate. Southwest’s announcement came a few days after other carriers — including American Airlines, Alaska Airlines and JetBlue Airways — informed employees about the need to adhere to federal vaccine rules.

I appreciate what Kelly is saying here and maybe he’s telling the truth, but I just have one question. If he so disagreed with it, as he says, then why didn’t he sue the federal government to see if he could get the courts to stop this madness instead of just running with it?

Kelly says the deadline on this was December 8th which is over two months away. I think there’s plenty of time to get a lawsuit going and then if you can’t get a court to at least temporarily stop it, to go ahead and do what you have to do and blame Biden.

After the chaos we saw this weekend, there’s really no excuse for someone like Kelly to simply keep rolling with this. He needs to drop the mandate and let everyone know he’s suing the administration to protect the industry as well as the rights of his employees. If he loses, so be it. It will all be on Biden’s shoulders. But until then, he’s got to do the right thing or else he’ll have this on his shoulders too.

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