Jim Renacci
Jim Renacci
By Jim Renacci
Former Congressman

WADSWORTH, Ohio – The bad news in Ohio just gets worse every day. The COVID-19 vaccination mandates in our health care system are causing and will continue to cause a health care system meltdown. Even if employers do not mandate a vaccine, they are forcing their employees to take painful and expensive weekly COVID-19 tests.

To add insult to injury, employers are then requiring these same employees to pay for the weekly testing from their own pockets.

Workers are saying no and walking away, or worse, being fired from jobs they have held for decades. Hospitals are shutting down entire wings and reducing essential services because of staff shortages. Even before COVID-19, employers had difficulty filling all their positions. Something must give.

Unfortunately, both Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and President Joe Biden believe they can solve these problems with more of the same forced, big government solutions. But when government gets involved, our free-market system collapses. We know this. Or at least we used to know this.

How about trying a different approach? Instead of endless new mandates that trigger more firings and resignations, let’s make Ohio a sanctuary state for freedom and choice.

Let me explain. As a successful business owner in Ohio of nearly 40 years, I never set out to reinvent the proverbial wheel.

Instead, when I worked to turn around troubled companies, I studied closely their more successful competitors in the marketplace. I then looked at exactly what these successful companies were doing and implemented those same practices to the companies I was trying to improve. I did this repeatedly to enormous success.

These same lessons can and should be applied in Ohio. Instead of copying how blue state governors in California, Michigan, and New York are responding, let’s look to our red state governors in Florida, South Dakota, and Texas.

In Florida, Republican Governor Ron DeSantis signed into law a bill that prohibits businesses and local governments from requiring proof of vaccines before utilizing their services. The bill permits fines of $5,000 per occurrence for breaking this law. Additionally, DeSantis has vowed to use this new law to fine businesses and local governments $5,000 per employee that are forced to get vaccinated.

In Texas, Governor Greg Abbott issued an Executive Order that prohibits any public or private entity that receives public funds from demanding a person’s vaccine status to enter a place or receive a service. Such an order would also prohibit vaccine mandates from any entity that receives public funds in Texas.

Instead of looking to left-wing blue states for guidance, let’s look instead to our red state governors who have embraced freedom and choice. If not, the daily bad news will only worsen.