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Gov. Katie HobbsPolitics Unplugged/YouTube screenshot

PHOENIX (LifeSiteNews) – Arizona Democrat Gov. Katie Hobbs vetoed legislation to strengthen conscience protections for residents who object to being vaccinated, claiming that prohibiting vaccine mandates rather than the mandates themselves would “devastate” the economy.

Just the News reported that Senate Bill 1250 would have required employers to offer exemptions for “COVID-19 vaccination, influenza A or B vaccination, or flu vaccination or any vaccination authorized by the United States Food and Drug Administration for emergency use only,” with violations punishable by $5,000 fines.

“This bill is unnecessary, as legal protections for an employee’s religious beliefs already exist in federal employment law,” Hobbs said in her veto message. “This bill also threatens employers with a civil penalty and a hefty fine, which could be devastating for Arizona’s many small businesses.”

“I spent my entire career as a nurse, being an advocate for my patients and ensuring that their beliefs are respected and protected,” Republican state Sen. Janae Shamp responded. “The reason I’m here at the Senate is because I was fired from my job as a nurse after refusing to get the experimental COVID-19 vaccine. My top priority is this bill because during the pandemic, Americans’ medical freedoms were taken from them, myself included. For me, the Governor’s veto is personal. Not just for me but for every Arizonan who lost their job in the same manner.”

Many Americans continue to harbor both moral reservations and safety concerns about the COVID shots, which were developed and released in a fraction of the time vaccines usually take under former President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed initiative. According to a detailed overview by the pro-life Charlotte Lozier Institute, Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson all used aborted fetal cells during their COVID vaccines’ testing phase; and Johnson & Johnson also used the cells during the design & development and production phases.

While many have attempted to deny or downplay the jabs’ links to abortion, the Washington Examiner’s Timothy Carney noted that the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s journal Science admitted as much, as did the left-wing fact-checking outlet Snopes.

As for safety, the federal Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting system (VAERS) reports 34,965 deaths, 195,415 hospitalizations, 18,942 heart attacks, and 26,711 myocarditis and pericarditis cases as of March 24. An April 2022 study out of Israel indicates that COVID infection itself cannot fully account for the myocarditis numbers, despite common insistence to the contrary.

Jab defenders are quick to stress that reports submitted to VAERS are unconfirmed, as anyone can submit one, but U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) researchers have recognized a “high verification rate of reports of myocarditis to VAERS after mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccination,” leading to the conclusion that “under-reporting is more likely” than over-reporting.

Further, VAERS is not the only data source containing red flags. Data from the U.S. Pentagon’s Defense Medical Epidemiology Database (DMED) shows that 2021 saw drastic spikes in a variety of diagnoses for serious medical issues over the previous five-year average, including hypertension (2,181%), neurological disorders (1,048%), multiple sclerosis (680%), Guillain-Barre syndrome (551%), breast cancer, (487%), female infertility (472%), pulmonary embolism (468%), migraines (452%), ovarian dysfunction (437%), testicular cancer (369%), and tachycardia (302%).

Last September, the Japanese Society for Vaccinology published a peer-reviewed study conducted by researchers from Stanford, UCLA, and the University of Maryland, which found that the “Pfizer trial exhibited a 36% higher risk of serious adverse events in the vaccine group” while the “Moderna trial exhibited a 6% higher risk of serious adverse events in the vaccine group,” for a combined “16% higher risk of serious adverse events in mRNA vaccine recipients.”

In December 2022, Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin hosted a roundtable discussion during which civil rights attorney Aaron Siri detailed data from the CDC’s V-Safe reporting system revealing that 800,000 of the system’s 10 million participants, or approximately 7.7 percent, reported needing medical care after COVID injection. “Twenty-five percent of those people needed emergency care or were hospitalized, and another 48 percent sought urgent care,” Siri added. “Also, another 25 percent on top of the 7.7 percent reported being unable to work or go to school.”

Another study by a team of American, British, and Canadian researchers, published last December in the Journal of Medical Ethics, found that COVID booster mandates for university students – a relatively healthy group at relatively low risk from the virus – do far more harm than good: “per COVID-19 hospitalisation prevented, we anticipate at least 18.5 serious adverse events from mRNA vaccines, including 1.5–4.6 booster-associated myopericarditis cases in males (typically requiring hospitalisation).”

Despite Hobbs’s framing of the issue, COVID vaccine mandates were linked to tens of thousands of job losses across business, education, hospitals, and nursing homes, to the point that some hospitals opted to put nurses with COVID itself back on duty rather than put unvaccinated caregivers to work.

Hobbs’s veto of Senate Bill 1250 is the latest consequence of Democrats gaining control of the Arizona governor’s mansion. Past left-wing actions include vetoing legislation to keep critical race theory out of public schools, proposing to defund a pro-life center for homeless pregnant women and redirect it to the abortion industry, and issuing an executive order requiring state agencies and government contractors to ignore “sexual orientation” and “gender identity or expression” as factors for employment decisions, even if relevant to contractors such as religious foster centers.