January 24, 2022

Vax Mandates Still Losing in Court

A federal judge issued an injunction against Biden’s mandate applying to federal workers.

Joe Biden’s authoritarian and unconstitutional vaccine mandates have not had a lot of success in court. Yes, the Supreme Court upheld the one applying to millions of healthcare workers, but it also struck down the one pertaining to businesses with 100 or more employees. Lower courts have, for the most part, likewise struck down or blocked the various vax mandates. The latest was a Friday afternoon ruling by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey V. Brown in Texas, who said the president lacks the authority to mandate “that all federal employees consent to vaccination against Covid-19 or lose their jobs.”

Biden himself promised not to mandate the vaccine that he and his party had mocked and questioned when Donald Trump was still president, only to end up relentlessly pushing that same vaccine and ultimately reversing himself because not quite enough Americans were making the choice he demanded. “While vaccines are undoubtedly the best way to avoid serious illness from COVID-19, there is no reason to believe that the public interest cannot be served via less restrictive measures than the mandate, such as masking, social distancing, or part- or full-time remote work,” Judge Brown wrote. But as he also rightly noted, there’s a bigger issue here.

“It is instead about whether the President can, with the stroke of a pen and without the input of Congress, require millions of federal employees to undergo a medical procedure as a condition of their employment,” Brown wrote. “That, under the current state of the law as just recently expressed by the Supreme Court, is a bridge too far.”

More importantly, Brown pointed out that Biden and Co. seem to have no limit to what they’ll seek to do. He wrote, “The government has offered no answer — no limiting principle to the reach of the power they insist the President enjoys.”

From a practical standpoint, Biden announced his order on September 9. This ruling from a district judge didn’t come until January 21. That’s more than four months under which federal workers had to operate under the assumption that the vaccination was required. Some lost their jobs for refusing. How many more were vaccinated under duress? And is forced medical decisions something to which Americans ought to aspire?

The fact is Biden — or at least his handlers — knew exactly what he was doing. By mandating vaccination for federal workers, contractors, healthcare workers, and employees of large businesses, Team Biden knew that some wide number of people would end up vaccinated whether they wanted to be or not. (Some 98% of the federal workforce is vaccinated.) If workers refused and were fired or quit, well, they were probably the “wrong sort” of workers anyway (i.e., largely Trump supporters) and Team Biden’s targeted purge worked exactly as planned. Even if the mandates were eventually struck down, much of this would be permanent. And if any are upheld in court as the medical workers one was, well then Biden’s presidential power has expanded greatly.

In many ways it was a win-win for Biden. Then again, his popularity and that of other planks of his agenda have taken a big hit. Tens of thousands of protesters gathered in Washington just this weekend to voice their objection to Uncle Joe’s authoritarianism.

“I’m not against vaccines. I’m just against mandating them,” said one vaccinated protester. “We have freedom of choice here in this country, or at least we should.” Another argued, “Freedoms and mandates don’t really go hand in hand.”

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