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Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton scored what he considered to be a “victory for the children of Texas” after a federal judge ruled against vaccine and masking mandates for Head Start programs initiated by the Biden administration.
That new rules issued last month requires children over the age of 2 in Head Start programs to wear masks, while the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services requires staff, contractors and volunteers in the program to be vaccinated by the end of January.
“This is definitely a victory for Texas children, given that parents should make these decisions, not the Biden administration,” Paxton told Fox News.
“We did not think it was right,” Paxton said of the rules implemented by the Biden administration. “We thought it was a parental election, not a Joe Biden election, so we sued them, claiming he did not have the authority – statutory or constitutional – to do this.”
“The Board’s rule requires that Head Start personnel be vaccinated and near universal masking of children and adults,” the court said in a statement. “It is undisputed that an agency cannot act without the permission of Congress. The question here, then, is whether Congress authorized HHS to impose those requirements.”
Asked whether he expected a setback from the opposition, Paxton said: “I think parents will be happy that they are going to make the decision. This is a victory for freedom in America.”
“Hopefully the Biden administration will lay down their swords and stop stabbing parents and children and just let this thing stand,” Paxton added. “I’m sure they will not … They think they have to make the choice for these children and for these parents.”
The Court also noted that it “concludes that there is a substantial likelihood that the mandates do not fit into the authorizing text of the Head Start Act, that HHS failed to comply with the APA when publishing mandates, and that mandates are arbitrary and whimsical, “and stated that it” provisionally mandates their enforcement in Texas. “
Texas Governor Gregg Abbott celebrated the verdict on social media and tweeted: “Texas has just beaten Biden again. Another of Biden’s vaccine and mask mandates was just stopped by a federal judge in Texas.”
Last week, 25 announced lawsuits against the Biden administration over mask mandates for children and vaccine requirements for staff Head Start programs.