MADISON – Gov. Tony Evers vetoed bills Friday that would have prevented the government from requiring people to get vaccinated against the coronavirus and barred it from closing churches because of the pandemic.
It was the second time in less than two months that the Democratic governor vetoed such measures, which this year have been a focus of Republicans who control the Legislature.
Assembly Bill 23 would have barred the state Department of Health Services and local health officials from requiring anyone to get the vaccine.
“I am vetoing this bill in its entirety because I object to the provisions of the bill that would take away existing tools available to state and local public health officials during a declared public health emergency,” Evers wrote in his veto message.
The state Supreme Court has found Evers has limited powers to deal with the coronavirus, but state law gives local health officials broad powers during pandemics.
Republicans passed the bills in recent weeks as Democrats balked.
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