Nebraska suing to stop President Biden’s vaccine mandates

FILE - In this Sept. 14, 2021, file photo, a syringe is prepared with the Pfizer COVID-19...
FILE - In this Sept. 14, 2021, file photo, a syringe is prepared with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic at the Reading Area Community College in Reading, Pa. Millions of U.S. workers now have a Jan. 4 deadline to get a COVID vaccine. The federal government on Thursday, Nov. 4, 2021 announced new vaccine requirements for workers at companies with more than 100 employees as well as workers at health care facilities that treat Medicare and Medicaid patients.. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)(Matt Rourke | AP)
Published: Nov. 5, 2021 at 2:46 PM CDT|Updated: Nov. 5, 2021 at 4:16 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - Nebraska is among 11 states that filed a lawsuit Friday to stop the coronavirus vaccine mandate from President Biden and OSHA.

The lawsuit filed in the St. Louis-based 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals argues that the authority to require vaccinations rests with the states, not the federal government.

“The U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly declared that regulation of healthcare matters, including compulsory vaccinations, falls uniquely within the authority of the state, not the federal government,” said Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson. “For the first year and a half of the COVID-19 pandemic, both the Trump and Biden Administrations recognized this. Yet now the Biden Administration is attempting to override state authority by using an executive order to mandate COVID-19 vaccines. By announcing an OSHA rule that is 490 pages long in its preprint form, it is clear that the Biden Administration is trying to create new law through executive order. This Administration has left us no choice but to go to court to protect constitutional boundaries of power and the 44% of Nebraska workers that fall under this unconstitutional mandate.”

New regulations by OSHA mandate that companies with more than 100 employees require their workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or be tested for the virus weekly and wear masks on the job. The requirement is to kick in Jan. 4. Failure to comply could result in penalties of nearly $14,000 per violation.

“Nebraska is playing a leading role in suing the federal government to stop President Biden’s draconian and illegal coronavirus vaccine mandate,” said Governor Pete Ricketts. “Thank you to Attorney General Peterson for his leadership. Nebraska will continue to fight back, so we can safeguard our freedoms and protect the Nebraskans who are risk of losing their jobs because of the President’s mandate.”

The Biden administration has been encouraging widespread vaccinations as the quickest way out of the pandemic. A White House spokeswoman said Thursday that the mandate was intended to halt the spread of a disease that has claimed more than 750,000 lives in the U.S.

The top legal official for the U.S. Department of Labor, which includes OSHA, has said legal precedent allows it to issue rules that keep workplaces safe and that those rules pre-empt state laws.

Nebraska was joined in the lawsuit by the Republican attorneys general of Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Montana, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming. The office of Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller, a Democrat, also joined in the suit, along with several private, nonprofit and religious employers.

More information about the lawsuit can be found by clicking here.

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