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Tipsheet

Biden White House Again Gives the Courts the Middle Finger Over COVID Vaccine Mandate

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

I know the Kyle Rittenhouse verdict and the days following the 2021 elections sort of overtook the news cycle, the former story especially, but we still have this mess with the COVID vaccine mandate brewing. Yes, Democrats were licking their wounds after Election Day 2021, while also blaming white supremacy for their overall abysmal showing—but Biden's mandate is still an ongoing battle. Yes, the courts put a stop to its implementation and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is no longer working on its enforcement protocols for the mandate, but the Biden White House is once again telling companies to defy the courts last week (via The Hill):

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For the second time in a month, the White House on Thursday urged large businesses to move forward with coronavirus vaccine mandates for their workforces despite court challenges to the Biden administration’s vaccine-or-test requirement for private companies.

“Our message to businesses right now is to move forward with measures that will make their workplaces safer and protect their workforces from COVID-19,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters during a briefing. “That was our message after the first stay issued by the Fifth Circuit. That remains our message and nothing has changed.”

Psaki’s comments came after the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) said it would suspend enforcement of the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for businesses after a federal appeals court reaffirmed its decision to suspend the mandate.

Psaki said … that the administration remains confident that it has the authority to issue the rule, known as an emergency temporary standard, which requires businesses with more than 100 employees to require that their employees be vaccinated against COVID-19 or submit to regular testing for the virus.

Psaki also said the administration was still working off the Jan. 4 deadline it set for businesses to comply with the rule, despite the ongoing legal dispute.

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The mandate states that companies with 100 or more employees must vaccinate their workforces. It's been cited as overreach and one of the reasons for the ongoing labor shortage crisis. Also, there is no doubt that this mandate will trickle down to smaller businesses. At the same time, I was told that defying the courts was authoritarianism at work. The very people who speak about protecting our institutions are also the ones defiling them because they don't like a particular legal ruling. It's an old tale. I just hope the Never Trump elements of the country are happy about this return to norms. 

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