Oklahoma Guard goes rogue, rejects COVID vaccine mandate after sudden change of command

The new commander of the Oklahoma National Guard has declared the organization will not enforce the Defense Department’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate on its troops, according to local media outlets.

Army Brig. Gen. Thomas Mancino was announced as the state’s new adjutant general Wednesday, though he has not yet been confirmed by the state Senate, according to a press release from Gov. Kevin Stitt’s office.

On Nov. 2, Stitt formally requested that DoD not enforce the mandate on the state’s Army and Air National Guard members. In the letter, which his office posted online, he said that 10% of the state’s troops had refused the vaccine and that the mandate was “irresponsible.”