Republican Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida blasted Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall for ignoring a federal court order.
Gaetz wrote a letter that demands to know why the Air Force is ignoring a federal court order issued last week.
The court order prohibits the Air Force from taking any measures to discharge airmen who filed for religious exemption Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine military mandate.
“In a time when our nation is in desperate need of able-bodied fighting men, we cannot afford to involuntarily separate loyal airman with a career of honorable service in the United States Air Force,” wrote Gaetz in the letter.
Gaetz has taken a prominent role in Congress, opposing the military vaccine mandate.
Gaetz wrote to Kendall and Air Force Judge Advocate General Jeffrey A. Rockwell in his letter:
On July 14, 2022, Judge McFarland of The United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio granted a temporary restraining order (TRO) on behalf of Air Force servicemen against the Department of the Air Force, enjoining and restraining the Air Force from taking any disciplinary or separation measures against these servicemen for their refusal to get vaccinated for COVID-19. In the order, Judge McFarland states that these “disciplinary or separation measures include, but are not limited to, ‘adverse administrative actions, non-judicial punishment, administration demotions, administrative discharges, and courts-martial.'”
On July 18, 2022, Lieutenant General (Lt Gen) Carl E. Schaefer, Deputy Commander of the Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC), sent out an AFMC-wide email summarizing the TRO, which taking a loose interpretation of the Judge’s order, advised the AFMC to continue with involuntary separation processing up to and including obtaining a board’s recommendation to discharge, while stopping short of executing the discharge itself.
Hence, despite the TRO, Master Sergeant (MSgt) Nickolas Kupper, and other airmen who are parties to the Doster case, have had adversarial proceedings against them continue. MSgt Kupper has been asked to decide of whether he wants a separation board in 7 duty days. The continuation of these adversarial proceedings is in direct opposition to the intent of Judge McFarland’s TRO and must not continue until the TRO has expired.
You can find more information about Gaetz’s letter and vaccine mandates here.