Twenty-one Republican state attorneys general recently sent a letter to President Joe Biden stating that they think his Covid-19 vaccination mandate for federal contractors could exacerbate supply-chain problems, confuse contractors, and “stands on shaky legal ground.”
Republican leaders and officials have threatened to sue over the order issued by Biden on September 9.
While some experts have said that they think the Biden administration is standing on a solid legal footing with the coronavirus mandates he has put in place.
In the text of the letter, the attorneys general said, “We strongly urge you to instruct agencies to cease implementing the mandate or, at a minimum, to provide clarity to agencies and federal contractors across the country and delay the mandate’s compliance date.”
The Biden administration is expected to release soon details about how the mandate will be implemented. The president has said that companies with at least 100 employees must require all employees to either undergo weekly testing or be vaccinated.
In contrast, the federal contractor mandate does not have a testing option and takes effect in December. In response, many governments, businesses, and schools set their Covid-19 vaccination requirements.
In a recent news release, Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch said that vaccinations should be an individual health decision and should not be mandated by the government.
“Forcing people to vaccinate or lose their jobs is a flawed premise … and the mismanaged execution of that idea demonstrates how utterly unworkable it is as a national policy,” said Fitch.
Employees of some federal contractors have been protesting the federal overreach into personal health decisions. When possible, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey directed the executive-branch state agencies not to comply or cooperate with the federal coronavirus mandate.
In Texas, Governor Greg Abbott issued an executive order that bars any entities or private companies from requiring vaccines.
In the letter, the attorneys general wrote that companies could be blacklisted unless their workers become vaccinated on what amounted to “an unworkable timeline.”
“We strongly urge you to instruct agencies to cease implementing the mandate or, at a minimum, to provide clarity to agencies and federal contractors across the country and delay the mandate’s compliance date,” read the letter. The letter was signed by attorneys general from Alaska, Texas, Mississippi, and other states.
In a move expected to be repeated across the U.S., Texas filed a lawsuit against the administration over its Covid-19 mandate for federal contractors, referring to the mandate as unconstitutional.
The move by Texas came a few hours after an announcement by the Missouri Attorney General’s Office that a 10-state coalition had filed its own lawsuit against the Biden administration over the federally contracted employee and federal contractor vaccine mandate.
The recent legal challenges are the latest from Republican-led states who oppose the sweeping new vaccination rules that President Biden announced in September.
Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt led Arkansas, Montana, Alaska, Iowa, North Dakota, New Hampshire, Wyoming, and South Dakota in filing their lawsuit.