The Ministry of Justice asks the High Court to allow vaccination
The Biden administration asked the Supreme Court on Thursday evening to block lower court orders that made President Joe Biden’s vaccine authorization for health care workers effective in about half of the states.
The government asked the judge to allow “urgently needed health and safety measures to take effect before the winter surge in COVID-19 cases worsens.”
It said this requirement “will save hundreds or even thousands of lives every month.”
The government’s request was made the day after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans lifted the national injunction. On the contrary, the court allowed the continued blocking of the authorization in the 14 states that were collectively sued in federal courts in Louisiana. This action changed the November 30 ruling of U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty, who initially implemented his orders nationwide.
Another appellate court, the U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis, refused to disrupt lower court orders in 10 other states.
The Biden administration asked the judge to allow the authorization to take effect in the 24 states covered by the two court rulings. A federal judge in Texas on Wednesday approved an injunction that only applies to the state.
Another court of appeals, the US Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, allowed the authorization to continue, stating that the Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra had the right to request vaccinations.
The dispute facing the Supreme Court is a rule issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid on November 5th that applies to various health care providers that receive Medicare or Medicaid funds. It requires their workers to receive the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by December 6th and to be fully vaccinated by January 4th. This is expected to affect more than 17 million worker providers in approximately 76,000 healthcare facilities and home healthcare facilities. This task has religious and medical exemptions.
Biden’s legal challenges to private employers’ vaccine authorization are also ongoing.
In other cases, the High Court allowed stricter vaccine regulations. On Monday, the judges refused to stop the COVID-19 vaccine request for New York health care workers, which does not provide an exemption for religious reasons. Earlier, the court rejected an urgent appeal made by Maine health care workers to block vaccine authorization without religious exemptions. In both cases, three conservative judges—Neil Gorsuch, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito—are opposed.