President Joe Biden’s White House has advised businesses with 100 or more employees to follow his vaccine mandate despite the temporary halt from a federal court of appeals.
“People should not wait,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters on Monday. “They should continue to move forward and make sure they’re getting their workplace vaccinated.”
This past September, President Biden announced that the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will mandate that private companies with 100 or more employees implement vaccine requirements or require weekly negative tests. The president waited nearly two months before releasing the details of his plan, which would not have even taken effect until January of 2022. A company in violation of the mandate could be fined $136,532.
The president’s plan encountered a roadblock on Saturday when the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit Court issued a temporary stay blocking the mandate while considering a permanent injunction.
The ruling from a three-judge panel on Saturday resulted from a stay sought by the states of Texas, Utah, Mississippi, and South Carolina, as well as several businesses that oppose the Biden plan. The states and businesses filed a petition of review of the agency action, which goes directly to a federal appeals court instead of a one-judge federal district trial court.
“Because the petitions give cause to believe there are grave statutory and constitutional issues with the Mandate, the Mandate is hereby stayed pending further action by this court,” the judges wrote.
The Biden administration asked the court to lift the temporary suspension on Monday, dismissing the states’ and businesses’ unconstitutional claims as “premature,” per CNBC, asserting that the pause “would likely cost dozens or even hundreds of lives per day.”
Republican attorneys general in 26 states have filed a lawsuit against the Biden administration in five different appeals courts. David Vladeck, a professor of law at Georgetown University, told CNBC that the lawsuits have a “high probability” of reaching the Supreme Court, which may or not rule in the administration’s favor.
This mandate, if allowed to go into effect, will destroy Biden’s presidency. Just wait until one vital industry after another bottlenecks or shuts down. It’s impossible to fire so many workers without major consequences. Kiss of death for Biden and the Ds. https://t.co/hEBkSryIE2
— Ari Fleischer (@AriFleischer) November 8, 2021
“There are justices on the court who want to rein in the administrative state and this is a case in which those concerns are likely to come to the fore,” Vladeck told CNBC.
Should the Biden administration have its way and implement the vaccine mandate, the economic consequences could be disastrous. On Monday, the Truckload Carriers Association warned that the rule could further maximize the supply-chain crisis if a fraction of their drivers were to be fired or quit due to the mandate.
“TCA repeatedly called on the Administration to heed our warnings regarding this mandate’s impact on the already constrained supply chain, yet they chose to proceed with a disastrous mandate which will undoubtedly ensure the trucking industry loses a substantial number of drivers,” the group said in a statement.