The Fate of Biden’s Vaccine Mandates Now Lies With Supreme Court

The United States Supreme Court is hearing arguments Friday on two of Joe Biden’s vaccine mandates. The first mandate is the vax-or-test requirement for private businesses with 100 or more employees; the other is the vaccine mandate for health care workers.

Biden’s vaccine mandates were promptly challenged in the courts and were blocked several times. However, an Obama-appointed judge ruled last month that the large-business mandate could continue.

It is widely expected that the conservative-leaning court will rule against the mandates. The cases were accelerated to the court on an emergency basis, and a decision could come in weeks, if not days, according to the Associated Press.

The Biden administration has previously recognized their lack of authority to impose a vaccine mandate. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said earlier this summer that vaccine mandates are “not the role” of the federal government. “Well, I think the question here — one, that’s not the role of the federal government,” she said on July 23, offering no exception to this assessment. “That is the role that institutions, private-sector entities, and others may take. That certainly is appropriate.”

White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain also effectively acknowledged that such a mandate isn’t constitutional when, back in September, he retweeted a tweet that effectively praised Biden’s use of an OSHA rule as a workaround for enacting an unconstitutional federal mandate.

Biden’s vaccine mandates had majority support months ago, but attitudes have shifted, likely in part due to labor and health care worker shortages. A recent Zogby Strategies poll suggested that 2022 will see a significant backlash against national mandates. “Regarding COVID-19 vaccine mandates, overwhelmingly, 53% prefer personal choice to 37% who want government mandates,” Zogby found. In addition, a plurality of voters also believes it’s right to “disobey mandates from the President.”

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