Opinion: Governor’s vaccine mandate tramples individual choice

Rep. Vicki Kraft shares her latest thoughts on the impacts of Gov. Jay Inslee’s vaccine mandates on workers in Washington state.

Rep. Vicki Kraft shares her latest thoughts on the impacts of Gov. Jay Inslee’s vaccine mandates on workers in Washington state

Rep. Vicki Kraft
17th Legislative District

In just a few days, thousands of people across the state who have made the personal choice not to be vaccinated could lose their jobs as a result of Gov. Jay Inslee’s mandate. We already have worker shortages in both the public and private sectors. Soon, we may face shortages of health care workers, public school teachers, police, firefighters, and first responders. These people have dedicated their lives to their careers in many cases and are essential to the well-being of our communities. They have constitutional rights and should never be forced out of their jobs by the governor or anyone else.

Rep. Vicki Kraft
Rep. Vicki Kraft

Monday, Oct. 4 was the last day for state workers to get a shot to meet Inslee’s Oct. 18 deadline. The governor has played hardball on his vaccine mandates, considered the strictest in the nation, and he continues to ignore the voices of the people in Washington. There have been many statewide rallies against the vaccine mandates.

The governor refuses to acknowledge alternative medications and remedies discussed between patients and doctors that are working for them to address COVID-19. He also refuses to recognize those who have had COVID-19 are already naturally immune. It should be YOUR choice – not Gov. Inslee deciding what should go into your body.

We are now approaching 19 months under Gov. Inslee’s emergency ruling — this is NOT how our government was designed to operate! I was among the first to call for the end of this emergency order more than a year ago. I fought hard during the 2021 legislative session to reform the governor’s emergency powers by introducing House Bill 1381. The bill would have limited the governor’s emergency powers to 14 days after a state of emergency proclamation, unless extended by the Legislature with a two-thirds vote in both the House and Senate.

I was also among the first to stand up for your right for medical freedom. I introduced House Bill 1305, which would allow individuals the right to refuse any vaccination or related health measure, so you maintain control of what goes into your own body. Unfortunately, majority Democrats would not allow these bills to advance.

I share the frustration many of you have expressed to me. However, I am continuing to fight on your behalf and am not giving up. The stakes are too high to allow the government to trample our constitutional and individual rights. As President Reagan said, “Man is not free unless government is limited.”

Please stay in touch with my office on this issue.


  1. Susan

    Nineteen months… and no end in sight! The “end” isn’t even defined! This is as scary as it gets, folks. It is a point at which I never, in my wildest dreams, would have thought the State of Washington would find itself. It is so sad to see our State (and country) crumbling before our very eyes. Inslee is drunk on power. And with democrats controlling the State, there is no hope for change, sad to say.

    What’s next?

    Forced castration for males with too many kids? Inslee will be happy to determine what is “too many” after he declares it a public health issue.

    Or how about forced removal from your home if you are obese, and being herded into a barbed-wire encircled camp somewhere to force you to lose weight? Inslee simply needs to declare it a public health issue.

    Don’t laugh! Don’t roll your eyes!

    Two years ago, would you have ever, ever thought that the government would actually take away your job and livelihood for choosing to not inject a questionably-effective substance into your body? Yet, here we are.

    Thank you, Rep. Kraft, and your colleagues who push back against Inslee. I fear, though, it is a very long, uphill struggle that may be insurmountable.

  2. Scott Hooper

    Note that Washington is an “at will” work state in which either party (employer or employee) may sever the relationship at any time. There is no sense in which Inslee’s directive is a mandate to get vaccinated; it merely ties a known-good and reasonable safety measure to many jobs.

    Not doing this–giving people the ability to spread the virus at work–and particularly to our most vulnerable: in hospital, in care facilities–is what robs people of choice: the choice to receive care at a safe place and to not be put in danger our outright killed by a virus.

    Similar to the mask “mandates.” They mandated nobody wear a mask; they merely asserted that we would be safe in our common spaces, but people have the option to stay out of those common spaces and never bother with the mask.

    This would all be so clearer if we were talking about pants: I’m pretty sure you have to wear those in public or at work, although those don’t even save lives.

    Inslee was easily re-elected after his first lock-downs. It’s clear that the people have spoken, and a majority of us approve of taking steps to protect our communities.

    One note: although the term “natural immunity” is a misnomer, a recent study (and a couple before it) do show that having had COVID gives slightly better and longer protection than the vaccine, and I don’t understand why Inslee doesn’t allow people to offer evidence of an infection as proof of what I would rather call “natural vaccination.”

    1. JS JS

      I believe you are correct with your last statement.

      Let’s not forget that at least half of the people who have been infected didn’t even show symptoms. The survival rate is extremely high, and the mortality numbers are questionable.

      There are known, tried, proven, OTC treatments that prevent serious illness from sars-cov-2 as well as various other vaccines.Our Governor, and our Federal Government, and medical professionals at the highest level, are blocking access to those treatments in favor of a one-shot-fits-all approach. While the vaccine does prevent sickness in some people, it is certainly causing worse sickness in other people. The ends do not justify the means.

      With regards to “the people have spoken”, at least half of Washington does not approve of Inslee. With the great bulk of WA living in the King County and immediate areas, IE: large city, the turn-out doesn’t surprise me.

      1. Jack Burton

        Land doesn’t vote, people do. The electoral college protects certain parties’ federal executive candidates from democracy, but at the state level democracy still reigns supreme.


    Thanks for looking out for our best interest and acting in favor of caution as a result of a public health crisis. As I recall you pulled a stunt on the steps of the courthouse waving your mask in the air and turning a public health crisis into a political one. Had you had your way I hate to think about how many lives would have been lost. You have a degree in Advertising from U of Michagan. Does that make you qualified to comment on masks or the virus. You should thank Inslee instead of being part of the problem.


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