RICHMOND, Va. — Democrat Terry McAuliffe urged all Virginia employers on Monday to require the coronavirus vaccine for their workers who are eligible, sharpening a policy debate in the closely watched governor’s race over how best to deal with the pandemic.
McAuliffe’s call followed a decision by federal regulators to give full approval to Pfizer’s vaccine and marked an escalation of his advocacy for obligatory vaccines as a condition of employment.
The former governor now seeking a second term has previously urged Virginia health systems and school divisions to issue mandates, and required his own campaign staff to be fully vaccinated.
McAuliffe is facing Republican Glenn Youngkin, a former business executive and political newcomer, in the November general election. Youngkin, who is vaccinated, has consistently urged Virginians to get the shot but has said he opposes vaccine or mask mandates.