Two federal judges block Biden vaccine mandates

President Joe Biden has sought to impose sweeping COVID-19 vaccine mandates that could impact tens of millions of Americans from all walks of life.

His policies have received widespread pushback, however, and federal judges in two separate cases this week blocked a pair of mandates from going into effect.

Rulings threaten Biden mandates

The first ruling came from a Louisiana judge who issued a nationwide injunction against Biden’s vaccine mandate for health care workers.

The second decision came from Kentucky, where a judge issued an injunction against a vaccine mandate for federal contractors in a handful of states involved in the underlying lawsuit.

Of course, the rulings follow a separate limited injunction against the health care worker mandate issued just days earlier and a ruling last month to temporarily halt the most sweeping mandate for private employers with more than 100 workers.

According to the Lafayette Daily Adversary, U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty issued his nationwide injunction on Tuesday against the rule imposed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

The previous day, an injunction blocked the same mandate in 10 states that joined together in a legal challenge. Judges in both cases determined that Biden likely lacked the authority to direct executive agencies to issue such requirements.

“Civil liberties face grave risks”

“If the executive branch is allowed to usurp the power of the legislative branch to make laws, two of the three powers conferred by our Constitution would be in the same hands,” Doughty said.

The judge went on to assert that “civil liberties face grave risks when governments proclaim indefinite states of emergency,” adding: “During a pandemic such as this one, it is even more important to safeguard the separation of powers set forth in our Constitution to avoid erosion of our liberties.”

Meanwhile, U.S. District Judge Gregory Tatenhove’s preliminary injunction addressed a challenge spearheaded by GOP Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron and joined by officials in Ohio and Tennessee.

That judge determined that the issue at hand was not whether vaccines are effective or even if the government can make them mandatory, but rather whether the president has the authority outside of congressional authorization to hand down such mandates.

“In all likelihood, the answer to that question is no,” he asserted.

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