Opinion If Biden wants a vaccine mandate, he should ask Congress to pass one
Law enforcement officers union slams Biden's COVID-19 vaccine mandate
The Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association says the vaccine mandate is an act of coercion that 'villainizes employees'. It is currently reviewing the 'legal landscape' of the order.'This executive order villianizes employees for reasonable concerns and hesitancies and inserts the federal government into individual medical decisions,' Larry Cosme, president of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA), said in a statement.
The American system of government consists primarily of a series of process requirements. The Founders believed that these process requirements would guard against concentrations of power and thus protect liberty.
In the modern era, regard for the importance of process requirements has been largely abandoned. Government action is judged almost exclusively, by all sides, by whether people agree or disagree with the outcome, irrespective of whether the process guardrails that are the foundation of American government were respected.
There are serious long-term ramifications of that.
Is Biden's COVID-19 vaccine mandate a law? What happens to those who don't get the shot?
Biden's pathway to enforce the COVID-19 mandate is through the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.Biden's six-part plan to counteract the delta variant is his most aggressive action he's taken yet, as it is expected to impact nearly 80 million Americans, including government employees who also fall under the mandate.
President Joe Biden’s recently announcedcontains a number of process violations. This should be of concern even if you agree with the policies he announced.
This is not why we have OSHA
Biden wants the federal government to require that all eligible Americans get vaccinated. However, he is not directly ordering that.
Perhaps the president doesn’t believe he has the authority under public health laws to directly order people to get vaccinated. If so, and he believes that the federal government should have that authority, the proper course would be to ask Congress to pass a law granting it.
Instead, Biden is misusing theto compel employers to make vaccinations a job requirement.
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OSHA’s writ is workplace safety. It is intended to regulate risks endemic to the worksite, not as a backdoor way to address a general public health concern such as COVID-19.
Moreover, Biden is instructing OSHA to issue an emergency temporary standard that doesn’t go through the usual rule-making process, where it is subject to public comment. In its five-decade history,, and a significant number of those it has issued have been struck down by the courts.
The delta variant is causing another COVID-19 surge. But hospitalizations and deaths are still well below previous surges, during which OSHA didn’t issue an emergency standard compelling employers to make vaccinations or weekly testing a job requirement.
If it was not an emergency then, how is it an emergency now? Other than Biden’s declaration that his patience with those not getting vaccinated has run out.
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Biden wants to pick a fight
Biden wants to pick a political fight with Republican governors, such as Arizona’s Doug Ducey, who have imposed. If state funds are withheld from schools under such bans, Biden vowed, the federal government will make up the difference.
The Arizona mandate ban doesn’t include a financial penalty for schools. Instead, Ducey has made receiving federal COVID-19 relief monies he controls contingent on adhering to the vaccination and mask mandate ban. However, Attorney General Mark Brnovich has opined that violating the ban does jeopardizefor cities.
According to Biden, schools can use the money already allocated directly to them under the American Rescue Plan to make up for any withheld state funds. In addition, the federal Department of Education will establish a grant program through which schools can apply for additional money.
Perhaps the statutory constraints on the already appropriated American Rescue Plan funds are flexible enough for Biden to make that assertion. But the grant program would constitute a new appropriation, and appropriations are the purview of Congress, not the president.
Conservative radio host who opposed vaccines, pandemic precautions dies of COVID-19
A conservative radio host in Colorado who opposed coronavirus vaccines, face masks and other pandemic precautions has died from COVID-19. Your browser does not support this video Bob Enyart's death was confirmed by his "Real Science Radio" co-host Fred Williams on social media earlier this week. “It comes with an extremely heavy heart that my close friend and co-host of Real Science Radio has lost his battle with Covid,” Williams shared on Facebook. “Bob Enyart was one of the smartest, and without question, the wisest person I’ve known.” Start the day smarter.
It's a public health, not a national security, issue
Biden said he would invoke the Defense Production Act to compel the manufacture of rapid COVID-19 testing kits, including for home use.
The Defense Production Act gives the federal government extraordinary power to commandeer the manufacturing capacity of private companies to produce things essential to defense and national security.
COVID-19 is a public health issue. It does not threaten national security except metaphorically. And certainly not in the sense contemplated by the Defense Production Act.
President Donald Trump also improperly invoked the act to compel the production of ventilators, which generally went unused.
My own view is that there shouldn’t be a federal vaccination or mask mandate. Nor a state ban on local governments or private employers adopting such requirements. Risk profiles and risk tolerances differ. A one-size-fits-all approach in either direction doesn’t match the current public health situation.
If Biden wants a federal mandate, however, he should seek authority to impose one directly, not misuse existing authorities intended for very different purposes.
Robert Robb is a columnist for The Arizona Republic, where this column originally appeared. Follow him on Twitter:
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FDA authorizes Pfizer booster for people 65 and over; Iowa sets new 2021 high for coronavirus hospitalizations: COVID-19 updates .
Health care workers, teachers and grocery workers are among the high-risk workers eligible for a Pfizer booster. The latest COVID-19 updates:Individuals 18 and up who are at high risk for severe COVID-19 were also included in the authorization, which only covers those who are at least six months out from their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.