Editorial: Companies must keep right to decide

A recent editorial by the Marietta Times:

Ohio House Republicans bound and determined to ensure state government controls the decision-making for private companies pulled a dirty trick last week with a fast-tracked bill that would limit employers’ ability to require the COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of employment.

These so-called conservatives worked so hard to get their way before anyone realized what they were doing that the bill was approved by the Republican-controlled House Health Committee on the same day it was introduced. Meanwhile, Ohio’s major business groups, universities, doctor and nurse professional organizations, health care associations and hospitals ALL said they were opposed to the bill. It is bad for Ohio employers and workers.

By the middle of last week, members of the state Senate were concerned enough to announce if the House bill reached them, they would put on the brakes.

“I think the Senate will give it a little more due process than it received in the House,” said Senate Health Chairman Steve Huffman, R-Tripp City. “When it comes over, we’ll take our time in whatever committee it goes to and look deeply into it.”

His cousin, state Senate President Matt Huffman, R-Lima, agrees, but also understands the dangers of the state seeking more power to tell private businesses what to do.

“I don’t think our caucus wants to mandate anywhere in the private sector, or get involved in preventing them from mandating,” he said, earlier in September.

It is absurd to have to remind those who call themselves Republicans of the importance of leaving up to employers decisions about what is best for their workers and companies.

“Protection of an employer’s rights to make decisions in the best interest of their employees and those we serve cannot be over stated,” read a letter from business, health care and hospital coalition.

Indeed. It is good to know that at least those serving in Ohio’s state Senate understand that.

— Marietta Times, Oct. 5