Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh has asked the Biden administration to respond to a flood of appeals of a Sixth Circuit ruling that allowed the government to enact a controversial “vaccine or testing” mandate for business that considered ”large.”
Initially, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals halted the proposed implementation of the mandate that applies to businesses with 100 employees or more, which President Biden announced in the fall.
After many cases were filed against the mandate across the country, the Sixth Circuit was chosen to hear the appeal, a consolidation of all of the cases.
The Sixth Circuit overruled the Fifth Circuit, prompting trade associations, religious groups, and many businesses who sued over the mandate to ask the Supreme Court to step in and block the mandate again.
A group of business associations decried the vaccine mandate through a rulemaking process called Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) in an attempt to “use brute regulatory power to impel vaccination of millions of Americans.”
“For many of the Business Associations’Associations’ members, the harms discussed above are threatening the very viability of their business. As several employers reported: ”this could be catastrophic to our organization”; [this] could put us out of business,” wrote the business association in the brief to the Supreme Court. Justice Kavanaugh will oversee the emergency appeal from the Sixth Circuit.
Supreme Court to consider halt
The Supreme Court is not set to consider the validity of the vaccine mandate. The court will only consider temporarily halting the mandate’s implementation while litigation in lower courts will ultimately decide the issue on the merits.
The coalition, consisting of 27 business groups, quickly appealed to the highest court to block the lower court ruling. The groups claimed the mandate would bring “harm” to thousands of businesses across the country.
If rule goes into effect when the Biden administration wants, on January 4, tens of millions of workers will be forced to submit to a weekly Covid testing routine or get vaccinated.
The court may take action on the case early in 2022.