WASHINGTON—Heritage Foundation President Kevin Roberts released the following statement Thursday ahead of oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court over the Biden administration’s unlawful COVID vaccine mandate for employers:
“No American should be forced to choose between making their own medical decisions or keeping their job. Sadly, that is exactly the choice the Biden regime’s authoritarian COVID vaccine mandate forces on millions of law-abiding Americans and their employers.
“Heritage was deeply disappointed with the 6th Circuit panel’s shortsighted and misguided ruling allowing the mandate to move forward after the 5th Circuit wisely issued a stay against it. No constitutional or legal authority is given to the federal government to issue this type of mandate, and the Supreme Court should reiterate this fact quickly and without ambiguity. President Biden himself recently said there is ‘no federal solution’ to the pandemic, while arguing prior to his September directive that federal vaccine mandates are ‘not the role of the federal government.’ Why then should any American be bound by this oppressive mandate?
“When Heritage filed our lawsuit against this unconstitutional mandate, we expected the fight would ultimately end up at the U.S. Supreme Court. That day is here. This is a pivotal moment for our judicial system. The outcome of this case will have consequences far beyond a mandate over the COVID vaccine. The Supreme Court must follow the law and strike down this absurd, abusive mandate.”
BACKGROUND: The Heritage Foundation filed an application last month with the Supreme Court to halt the Biden administration’s COVID vaccine mandate on private employers. Heritage’s petition asks the court to review the case and immediately grant a stay pending resolution.
In the application, Heritage argues that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) does not have the statutory authority to impose a vaccine mandate on private employers. It also exceeds the federal government’s authority under the Commerce Clause and violates the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
“There is a significant difference between requiring employers to offer the protection of a vaccine to employees who have been specially exposed in the workplace and requiring employers to mandate one for all employees who face similar exposure outside of work,” Heritage argues in its reasoning for granting the application.