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Rep. pushes for special session to address vaccine mandates, IRS proposal

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Photo by SuperTalk Mississippi News

Another Mississippi lawmaker is calling on Governor Tate Reeves to bring lawmakers back to the capitol for a special session but for a different reason than the rest. 

Instead of medical marijuana, Representative Jansen Owens wants the state legislature to have the opportunity to adopt measures that he says will “let Mississippi send Joe Biden a clear message.”

In a letter addressed to the governor, the representative for Lamar and Pearl River Counties shared a belief that the state should take action to circumvent the president’s vaccine mandate and the proposal to give the IRS additional access to bank accounts with more than $10,000 worth of transactions in a given year—an increase from the initial threshold of $600. 

Related: Financial institutions push back on proposal that would force banks to monitor customer transactions

On the vaccine mandate, Owens states that he and his family are vaccinated, but he believes that it is not the responsibility of the federal government to decide; citing the 10th Amendment. The governor has previously stated he would support such a bill to bar vaccine mandates. 

As for the IRS proposal, which proponents say will identify billions of dollars in unpaid taxes, Owens is on the side that believes it is an example of government overreach. 

It remains to the seen whether the governor will bring lawmakers back for a special session at all as discussions regarding the medical marijuana proposal continue. Several other agenda items have also been proposed by legislative leadership. This includes allowing lawmakers to allocate funds for programs dedicated to victims of child abuse and domestic violence. Legislators may also work to change language in existing state law to allow the families of law enforcement officers who pass away from COVID-19 to receive ‘line-of-duty’ death benefits from the state. 

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