WASHINGTON — A federal judge has dealt President Joe Biden another blow. The judge ordered that the federal government stop its attempts to force workers to obtain the COVID vaccine and stop disciplinary action against those employees who refused to comply.
U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Brown from Texas cited recent the recent Supreme Court ruling on the OSHA vaccine mandate as part of his decision. He said that the federal government could not order workers to comply with a medical procedure as a condition for employment.
Reuters reports that the Justice Department has said it will appeal the ruling.
The federal government had labeled refusal to obtain the vaccine as misconduct and was expected to begin disciplining employees in the coming days. While the Biden administration has maintained that the majority of federal employees are vaccinated, this is a win for those who do not want to comply with the mandate.
While the ruling helps them now, it is unclear how the rule will proceed in the coming days.
The previous vaccine mandate by the Biden administration was given through OSHA to private employers. This would be an instance of a private employer requiring the vaccine of an employee, which may be viewed separately from the OSHA mandate ruling in a higher court.
Many businesses have already decided to roll back vaccine mandates after the Supreme Court’s ruling. The federal government did not and was proceeding with its plan.
Biden and his White House have continued to maintain that they will look at ways to force compliance with vaccine mandates. To date, the only mandate that has been successful is the CMS mandate for healthcare workers.
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