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The Daily Wire Hires ESPN Reporter Ousted Over Vaccine Mandate

AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack

The Daily Wire announced Friday that it had hired Allison Williams, who left her post at ESPN over the company's COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

Williams, who had initially decided to skip the 2021 college football season over the mandate, left her job as a sideline reporter for ESPN last week after the network and its parent company, Disney, rejected her accommodation request. 

Williams will be leading a special sports series that will only be available to Daily Wire members.

"The Daily Wire is one of America’s fastest-growing media companies and I am thrilled and honored to join them," Williams said in a statement. "I am proud to be a part of a company that fights for our rights and I cannot wait to bring agenda-free sports reporting to the Daily Wire’s members and millions of followers."

"Leaving ESPN was one of the most difficult decisions of my career, but it was the right thing to do," she continued. "I respect people who choose to get the COVID-19 vaccine, but it was not the appropriate medical decision for me at this time. No one should be forced to choose between their livelihood and the freedom to make their own health care choices—it is simply un-American."

Williams elected not to get the vaccine after consulting with her doctor and a fertility specialist because she and her husband are trying to conceive a second child

"Throughout our family planning with our doctor, as well as a fertility specialist, I have decided not to receive the COVID-19 vaccine at this time while my husband and I try for our second child," Williams said. "This was a deeply difficult decision to make and it’s not something I take lightly. I understand vaccines have been essential in the effort to end this pandemic; however, taking the vaccine at this time is not in my best interest."

This comes despite the Center for Disease Control and Prevention posting guidance last month urging women who are pregnant, recently became pregnant, breastfeeding, are trying to become pregnant or who might become pregnant in the future to get vaccinated.

"I also want people to know who support these mandates that I fight for you," she said. "Because if this is the direction we take our country, there will come a time when the government or corporations mandate you to get something that does not align with your values. Power given is seldom returned. And when that day comes, I want you to at least know that we fought, and we tried."

ESPN announced in May that employees who travel to events are required to be vaccinated by Aug. 1, which was followed by Disney announcing in late July that all on-site salaried and non-union hourly employees in the U.S. were required to be fully vaccinated within 60 days.

And in August, the Biden administration announced a vaccine mandate for private companies, which, once implemented, will require employers with at least 100 employees to mandate that their workers get vaccinated or undergo weekly coronavirus testing.

The Daily Wire said that the company will not comply with the vaccine mandate and will fight any legal challenges that come its way.

"The Biden administration continues to pressure businesses into acting as the enforcement arm of the federal government’s tyrannical vaccine regime. It’s a shame so many businesses are going along with it. We won’t," Daily Wire co-founder and co-CEO Jeremy Boreing said.

Williams had been an ESPN sideline reporter since 2011, covering major sporting events such as the NCAA Final Four, the College Football Playoff National Championship, the Rose Bowl and the NBA Draft.

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