Biden Vaccine Mandates Blocked Again
A federal judge in Georgia blocked nationwide the Biden mandates that federal contractors' employees must be vaccinated. Meanwhile Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb of Indiana expressed frustration Tuesday at the “absurd” reasons some cite for refusing vaccinations.
Biden Vaccine Mandate For Contractors Blocked Nationwide
The Biden administration’s mandate for federal contractors’ employees to be vaccinated will be halted nationwide, amid a slew of challenges from states that say the president overstepped his authority in requiring the Covid-19 shots. Led by Georgia, the seven states that challenged the mandate set to take effect on Jan. 4 are likely to succeed in their lawsuits against the administration’s order, U.S. District Court Judge R. Stan Baker of the Southern District of Georgia said in an order issued Tuesday. (Mulvaney, 12/7)
Judge Issues Nationwide Injunction Against Biden's Vaccination Mandate For Federal Contractors
A federal judge on Tuesday issued a nationwide injunction against a vaccine mandate for federal contractors, ruling that President Joe Biden probably exceeded his authority by imposing the requirement. Judge R. Stan Baker, who's based in Georgia, temporarily blocked implementation of the administration after a lawsuit from numerous states and a trade group argued that letting the mandate take effect on Jan. 4 would cause "irreparable injury" to workers who could be forced out of their jobs. (Gregorian, 12/7)
Second Senate Democrat To Back Vote Against Biden Vaccine Mandate
Sen. Jon Tester (Mont.), a centrist Democrat from a state that voted heavily in favor of former President Trump, is planning to vote for a Republican resolution to nullify President Biden’s vaccine mandate for large employers. Tester is the second Senate Democrat to say he will support overturning Biden’s employer vaccine mandate under the Congressional Review Act (CRA).Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) said last week that he would do so as well. (Bolton, 12/7)
In related news —
Detroit Free Press:
Gretchen Whitmer Says Joe Biden Vaccine Mandate A 'Problem'
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, in her strongest public remarks to date about President Joe Biden's vaccine mandate for employers, said Monday that the requirement is "a problem" for her and state government, according to a published report. The Daily News in Greenville reported Whitmer as telling business leaders in Montcalm County that she had the same concerns as some of them that the mandate, if enforced, could lead to workers, including those in state government, walking off the job. (Spangler, 12/7)
Holcomb 'Frustrated' With Absurd Vaccine-Refusal Reasons
With Indiana’s COVID-19 hospitalizations doubling in the past month, Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb expressed frustration Tuesday at the “absurd” reasons some cite for refusing vaccinations, although he isn’t offering any new state actions to combat the spread of the virus. ... Holcomb recalled during a Statehouse interview about a woman telling him that she was glad he opposed President Joe Biden’s proposed vaccination mandates on large businesses, but also that she was disappointed Holcomb had received the COVID-19 vaccine because “I had a chip in me now.” (Davies, 12/8)
Biden's Plan For Free At-Home Covid Test Could Be Ineffective, Experts Warn
Sabrina Corlette, a co-director of the Center on Health Insurance Reforms at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy, said not all families will be able to pay up front for at-home tests, which can cost more than $20. Even for people who can afford it, part of the challenge for the Biden administration will be to make people aware of the reimbursements. Private insurance holders "may not know how to save their receipt or that their health plan will even cover it," Corlette said. "So that's almost the first step, is just making sure people know that they can now do this." It is also unclear whether the plan will limit the number of tests people can be reimbursed for and whether there will be certain restrictions on who qualifies for reimbursement. (Egan, 12/7)