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7 Things: Sorrell continues call for vaccine mandate ban in special session, gambling bill unlikely for 2022 session of the Alabama Legislature, ALFA still sparring with Mo Brooks and more …

7. More than 1,000 flights canceled

  • Southwest Airlines had to cancel more than 1,000 flights in Jacksonville, Florida, over the weekend, and while the company has blamed the issue on weather and traffic control issues, other reports claim that the issue is related to President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate and federal workers staging a “sickout.” 
  • The Federal Aviation Administration came out saying that the flight cancellations were due to a combination of “severe weather, active military training in the airspace, and unexpected limited staff at the Jacksonville facility,” but this situation has been an indication of a larger issue for many with the vaccine mandate forcing employees to choose between their job and their own personal health decisions. 

6. Trump 2024 looking likely

  • Former President Donald Trump has once again teased that he’s likely going to launch a 2024 presidential campaign to run against President Joe Biden. Trump made it even clearer that he might run at a rally he held in Iowa. 
  • Before the rally, Trump sent an email to supporters saying, “IOWA is absolutely critical to our efforts to take back the House and Senate in 2022, and then the White House in 2024.” While at the rally, Trump touted the new Des Moines Register polling data that showed 53% of Iowa citizens favor Trump and 91% of Republicans in Iowa hold the same view. 

5. California’s governor will require vaccines for students but his daughter is unvaccinated

  • While California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) was fighting off attempts to recall him from his office, he came under scrutiny for the severity of his COVID-19 mitigation efforts and his inability to follow his own rules. The most famous of these incidents included the ultra-expensive dinner, politically and financially, at the “French Laundry” with unmasked donors and friends.
  • But Newsom’s hypocrisy knows no bounds, as his latest order involving the forced COVID-19 vaccination of all school children in California schools has exposed that his own 12-year-old daughter is unvaccinated. It also appears that the COVID-19 vaccine is not the only one she is missing. Newsom seemed to indicate that she is missing many vaccinations when he explained why she isn’t vaccinated by saying she has a “series of other shots” to get first.

4. Britt breaks with Shelby on debt ceiling vote

  • U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) has recently come under criticism for his decision to work with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to negotiate with Democrats in raising the debt ceiling to keep the government open. As a result, Shelby had to vote to increase the debt ceiling. 
  • U.S. Senate candidate Katie Britt has been closely associated with Shelby in her campaign since she formerly served as his chief of staff, but Britt has broken with Shelby on his vote, saying, “Republicans should have made them own the issue instead of bailing them out.” She added that they “should not help them raise the debt ceiling.” Britt also stated that she would’ve voted against the increase. 

3. Carl takes issue with Brooks’ ALFA stance

  • After U.S. Representative Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) alleged that the Alabama Farmers Federation (ALFA) was in favor of illegal immigration and open borders, many have come out against Brooks, including Lt. Governor Will Ainsworth. Now, U.S. Representative Jerry Carl (R-Mobile) has come out against Brooks’ comments.
  • Carl called Brooks’ interpretation of the issues “far off-base,” adding that he doesn’t “know where Mo Brooks is getting this from.” He said Brooks “continues throwing all the congressmen under the bus — even the ones that are supporting him.” Carl went on to say that he’s “tired of being shoved around by someone who has spent a lifetime in politics, is simply going to use me and my district as a stepping stone to the next place he wants to go.” 

2. A lottery bill won’t be introduced by Marsh

  • State Senator Del Marsh (R-Anniston) has previously led efforts in Alabama to legalize gambling and the lottery, but he’s said that he doesn’t have plans to introduce another lottery bill in the upcoming legislative session. 
  • Marsh has said that it’s possible that the legislature could consider another bill in the future, but it won’t be one from Marsh. Despite this, he said the issue “is one people want to address and have an ability to vote on it. I’ve seen the polling numbers on that. It’s heavy across the lines for the Democrats, Republicans, men, women. I’m a little surprised, quite honestly, that the bills the Senate has passed in the past has not reached the House for a vote. I don’t plan on bringing one next session.”

1. Sorrell wants a bill to combat the vaccine mandate

  • State Representative Andrew Sorrell (R-Muscle Shoals) has voiced support for using the upcoming special session to deal with President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate and attempt to block the mandate in Alabama. The special session being suggested by lawmakers is for redistricting. 
  • Sorrell has said that it’s “somewhat possible” that other issues could be brought up during the redistricting session, and the issues brought up will likely be “medical freedom.” Sorrell stated, “We need to make it illegal under Alabama law for a federal officer to try to come in and give someone a vaccine that they do not want.”