Last week Senator Messmer gutted the bill and removed religious exemptions without inquiry and excluded healthcare workers and sports/concert venue workers. He increased testing for up to twice a week, and removed being eligible for unemployment.
This week Senator Messmer (anti-freedom and pro-pharma) has filed two more amendments to HB 1001. He wants to exclude more people including performing artists, and he wants to remove exemptions for people who agree to test and mask in lieu of the mandated shot .
Senator Doriot also filed an amendment to add religious exemptions back with no further inquiry. Many people had reached out to him asking him to do that including myself.
Rep Lehman the author of the bill tries to pretend that he is not happy that the bill was gutted, but he clearly said he supported Messmer’s first amendment to gut the bill.
The past two days HB 1001 has been available for 2nd reading in the full Senate where the filed amendments could be heard and voted on.
Rep Lehman has declined to call the bill for 2nd reading both days. IF HE SUPPORTED FREEDOM like he claims, he would have called the bill up and had a vote to add religious exemptions with no further inquiry back to the bill, but he didn’t.
Call Rep Lehman
Tell him that needs to return the bill to the House version.
Call Senator Messmer
Tell him that you are disgusted that he is a sell out to the people of Indiana and this will be remembered. He cannot pretend he supports freedom anymore. He only listened to the Chamber of Commerce and Eli Lilly.
HB 1001 currently allows medical exemptions with no further inquiry, exemptions for prior infection for 90 days and proof of antibodies every 90 days, exemptions for staff who agree to test and mask up to twice weekly and possibly paid for by you, and religious exemptions per the Federal Civil Rights Act. It excludes employees of government entities, excludes healthcare workers, and excludes workers are concert, sports, music venues and those in close proximity of those arenas.
If the bill is going to get a vote in the Senate, then it needs to have 2nd reading by Monday 2/28. The deadline for passing the Senate is Tuesday 3/1.
I have decided not to take a hard line stance either way for support/oppose. This bill will help some people keep their jobs and it will exclude some people. I know nobody likes being forced to test and mask, but I have spoke to employees who would rather have to mask and test than be fired.
Most companies with mandates are already requiring staff with exemptions to mask and test now.
If Doriot’s amendment for religious exemptions with no futher inquiry would pass, I would support the bill.
The main thing is to call and complain that this bill doesn’t do enough, and tell them your opinion. This bill was originally patterned after the exemption bill in Florida passed by Florida Republicans yet our Republican “public servants” gutted the freedom parts of the bill. Unfortunately, Indiana Republicans don’t seem to belong to the Republican party.
Call the two numbers listed above and call your own Senator at 317-232-9400. They should be able to direct you to your Senator.