Judge Expands Block of Biden’s COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate for Health Care Workers

By Isabel van Brugen
Isabel van Brugen
Isabel van Brugen
Reporter
Isabel van Brugen is an award-winning journalist and currently a news reporter at The Epoch Times. She holds a master's in newspaper journalism from City, University of London.
November 30, 2021 Updated: December 1, 2021

A federal judge in Louisiana on Tuesday issued a preliminary injunction to block President Joe Biden’s national COVID-19 vaccine mandate for health care workers, which had been set to go into effect next week.

U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty in Monroe, Louisiana, issued the injunction (pdf) to expand a separate order issued on Monday by a Missouri federal court, which applied to just 10 states.

In doing so, the judge ruled in favor of a request from state Attorney General Jeff Landry, a Republican, to block an emergency regulation issued by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on Nov. 4.

Landry said in a statement to The Epoch Times, “We applaud the ruling and stand with last year’s heroes, who know what’s best for their healthcare [better] than the government bureaucrats!”

The president’s vaccine mandate requires all health care workers—full-time, part-time, volunteers, and contractors working at health care facilities receiving Medicaid or Medicaid funding—to receive their first COVID-19 vaccine dose by Dec. 6, and their second dose by Jan. 4.

Doughty argued in his ruling that the CMS lacked the constitutional authority to issue the vaccine mandate that would affect more than 2 million health care workers that are yet to be vaccinated against the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus.

“There is no question that mandating a vaccine to 10.3 million health care workers is something that should be done by Congress, not a government agency,” Doughty wrote. “It is not clear that even an act of Congress mandating a vaccine would be constitutional.”

Doughty added that the plaintiffs also have an “interest in protecting its citizens from being required to submit to vaccinations.”

“If human nature and history teach anything, it is that civil liberties face grave risks when governments proclaim indefinite states of emergency,” he wrote. “During a pandemic such as this one, it is even more important to safeguard the separation of powers set forth in our Constitution to avoid erosion of our liberties.”

The Epoch Times has contacted the White House and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid for comment.

“I applaud Judge Doughty for recognizing that Louisiana is likely to succeed on the merits and for delivering yet another victory for the medical freedom of Americans,” Landry said in a statement issued by his office, praising the judge’s decision. “While Joe Biden villainizes our health care heroes with his ‘jab or job’ edicts, I will continue to stand up to the President’s bully tactics and fight for liberty.”

Doughty’s injunction applies nationwide, except for the states of Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, New Hampshire, Nebraska, Wyoming, North Dakota, and South Dakota, as the 10 states are already under a preliminary injunction order issued by the Eastern District Court of Missouri on Nov. 29.

“While our fight is far from over, I am pleased the Court granted preliminary relief against the President’s unconstitutional and immoral attack on not only our health care workers but also the access to health care services for our poor and elderly,” Landry said. “I will see this case through to the end—fighting every step of the way to prevent the federal government from imposing medical tyranny on our citizens and turning last year’s health care heroes into this year’s unemployed.”

Isabel van Brugen
Isabel van Brugen is an award-winning journalist and currently a news reporter at The Epoch Times. She holds a master's in newspaper journalism from City, University of London.