Judge blocks Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccination mandate for healthcare professionals

FILE – A healthcare professional fills a syringe with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at Jackson Memorial Hospital on October 5, 2021 in Miami. U.S. regulators have opened up COVID-19 booster shots for all and more adults, Friday, Nov. 19, and let them choose a different dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. (AP Photo / Lynne Sladky, File)

(Texas Tribune) – A federal judge on Tuesday blocked the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccination mandate for health professionals from taking effect nationwide next week after Texas and other states challenged the order.

Louisiana Western District U.S. Judge Terry Doughty’s ruling follows the same decision Monday from Missouri U.S. District Judge Matthew Schelp. Schelp’s decision, however, applied to only 10 states.

Doughty wrote in his resolution that the mandate exceeds the authority of the Biden administration.

“If human nature and history learn anything, it is that civil liberties face serious risks when governments proclaim indefinite states of emergency,” Doughty wrote.

The Biden administration issued an emergency order, which went into effect on November 4, requiring eligible workers at health facilities participating in Medicare and Medicaid programs to receive the first shot of a two-dose vaccine or a one-dose vaccine before December. 6.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sued a few days later, calling the Biden administration’s order “an unprecedented federal vaccine decree” on health care workers.

Texas has also sued the Biden Administration over separate vaccine mandates for large corporations and federal contractors.

This article originally appeared in The Texas Tribune at www.texastribune.org. The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit, impartial media organization that informs Texans – and engages with them – about public policy, politics, government, and statewide issues.

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