A federal court in Texas on Friday blocked the Biden administration’s vaccination requirement for federal workers, which has been in place since November, in a ruling that the administration is expected to appeal.
Judge Jeffrey Brown found that the president had no legal authority to require federal workers to be vaccinated and said that while he has broad power over federal employment policies, those authorities are not broad enough to justify the September executive order that implemented the requirement.
“This case is not about whether people should be vaccinated against COVID-19; the court believes they should,” he wrote. “It is not even about the power of the federal government, properly exercised, to mandate vaccination of its employees. Rather, it is about whether the president can, with the stroke of a pen and without congressional input, 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 the Supreme Court recently expressed it, is a bridge too far.”
President Biden announced in September that he would require the federal workforce of more than 3.5 million people to be vaccinated unless they had a medical or religious exemption. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday that 98% of federal workers are vaccinated.
The U.S. Justice Department said it would appeal the ruling, according to a Reuters report.
Connect with Voice of America! Subscribe to our YouTube and activate notifications, or follow us on social networks: Facebook, Twitter e Instagram.