Politics

Biden admin ‘confident’ it’s vaccine mandate will be upheld, WH chief of staff says

Ron Klain, White House chief of staff, said on Sunday that he was “quite confident” that a vaccine or COVID-19 test mandate for private businesses would be held up in the courts. President Biden recently announced a vaccine mandate on private businesses that is set to take effect January 4.

Klain spoke with “Meet the Press” moderator Chuck Todd on NBC this Sunday and said, “I’m quite confident that when this finally gets fully adjudicated, not just a temporary order, the validity of this requirement will be upheld. It’s common sense, Chuck, if OSHA can tell people to wear a hard had on the job, to be careful around chemicals, it can be put in place these simple measures to keep our workers safe.” 

So far, 26 states are pushing back legally against a mandate developed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) that forces companies with at least 100 workers to be fully vaccinated or incorporate a policy requiring employees to undergo weekly COVID-19 testing and wear face masks if they choose to stay unvaccinated.

Some states have argued that the vaccine and test mandate is unconstitutional while others say that OSHA does not have the authority to institute sweeping public health regulations. Recently, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has put the mandate on hold.

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said in a statement last week, “OSHA’s vaccination mandate represents a real threat to individual liberty.” West Virginia filed a lawsuit with Kentucky, Idaho, Kansas, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Tennessee.

He added, “As we have seen throughout the country, it is also a public policy disaster that displaces vulnerable workers and exacerbates a nationwide shortage of front-line workers, with severe consequences for all Americans.”

ARTICLE: ELIZABETH HERTZBERG

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: NEW YORK TIMES

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