Eleven states filed lawsuits on Friday, claiming that President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 vaccination mandate for federal contractors is unlawful.
The lawsuit was filed in federal district court in Missouri and included attorneys general from Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming.
The states have requested a federal judge to overturn Biden’s rule that all federal contractors’ workers be vaccinated against the coronavirus, claiming that the order violates federal procurement law and is an abuse of federal power.
“If the federal government attempts to unconstitutionally exert its will and force federal contractors to mandate vaccinations, the workforce and businesses could be decimated, further exacerbating the supply chain and workforce crises. The federal government should not be mandating vaccinations, and that’s why we filed suit today – to halt this illegal, unconstitutional action,” said Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt said in a statement.
COVID vaccines are safe, effective, and recommended, according to New Hampshire Attorney General John Formella, but the benefits “do not justify breaking the law.”
Biden has stated that sweeping vaccine mandates will aid in the end of the deadly pandemic, but Republicans throughout the country have refused to agree to the requirements and have threatened to file similar lawsuits.
Texas filed a similar lawsuit in federal district court in their state on Friday, seeking to stop the mandate’s enforcement.
“The Biden Administration has repeatedly expressed its disdain for Americans who choose not to get a vaccine, and it has committed repeated and abusive federal overreach to force upon Americans something they do not want. The federal government does not have the ability to strip individuals of their choice to get a vaccine or not. If the President thinks his patience is wearing thin, he is clearly underestimating the lack of patience from Texans whose rights he is infringing,” said Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton in a statement.
Another group of states, led by Georgia, stated on Friday that they will file a federal lawsuit in that state to stop the contractor requirements. Alabama, Idaho, Kansas, West Virginia, and Utah, as well as South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster, have joined the case, according to Georgia Governor Brian Kemp.
When the suit was announced, it had not yet been filed, and Georgia officials did not share a copy of the complaint right away.
“We will not allow the Biden administration to circumvent the law or force hardworking Georgians to choose between their livelihood or this vaccine,” Kemp said in a statement.
The lawsuit was labelled a “dangerous political stunt” by Georgia’s Democratic Party.
On Thursday, Florida filed a second lawsuit challenging the federal mandate. In addition, the complaint stated that the president didn’t have the right to issue the rule, and that it violated procurement law.