A judge for the US District Court for the Southern District of Texas Friday blocked the Biden administration’s federal employee vaccine requirement.
US President Joe Biden signed an executive order in September requiring all federal employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19. A lawsuit was filed in December.
In blocking enforcement of the order Friday, Judge Jeffrey Vincent Brown wrote:
The court notes at the outset that this case is not about whether folks should get vaccinated against COVID-19—the court believes they should. It is not even about the federal government’s power, exercised properly, to mandate vaccination of its employees. 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. That, under the current state of the law as just recently expressed by the Supreme Court, is a bridge too far.
The US Department of Justice has already appealed the decision, but the fate of the order is uncertain. Earlier this month the US Supreme Court stayed the Biden administration’s recent COVID-19 business vaccine mandate, but it permitted the vaccine mandate for facilities participating in Medicare and Medicaid programs.