You can be required to lift 50 pounds in some jobs, but not be required to get a vaccine, especially if you live in states like Texas or Montana.

Such is the world we live in courtesy of Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas and other like-minded officials, who’ve decided they and not employers will dictate workplace rules and relationships instead of employers.

Abbott issued an executive order Monday banning any organizations, including private businesses, from requiring a vaccine of their workers. He urged the Legislature to pass a law in the same vein.

It’s more bluster from a politician on mission to grab headlines and prime the pump for a possible presidential run. It’s unfortunate a pandemic has become a tool for political gamesmanship. It comes as President Joe Biden rolls out rules for an order that requires all employers with over 100 employees to get vaccinated or get tested or have medical exemptions.

The executive order is likely to be challenged, especially for Texas-based American Airlines and Southwest Airlines who have already required employees be vaccinated.

But Abbott’s ruling ought to alarm all employers as it is significant government interference with private business and amounts to a government dictating business policies that could cost business billions of dollars for having an unvaccinated workforce.

The costs of COVID have decimated businesses since the beginning of the pandemic. Now we find workers quitting because they feel their workplace carries too much risk of getting COVID.

Abbott’s ill-informed and advised policies will turn into business bankruptcies.

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