Supreme Court hears arguments in mandate case here’s what happened

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments Friday on the Biden administration mandates for employers and federally funded healthcare providers.

As many know last year in September President Biden directed the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) to draft a rule to “require all employers with 100 or more employees to ensure their workforce is fully vaccinated or require any workers who remain unvaccinated to produce a negative test result on at least a weekly basis before coming to work,” as well as a mandate for around 17 million healthcare workers at medical facilities that receive Medicare and Medicaid funding and one for federal contractors which accounts for roughly a fifth of the U.S. labor market. The health worker and contractor mandates contain no testing option.

On December 21, Justice Brett Kavanaugh asked the administration to submit responses to challenges of the employer and health worker mandates, then scheduled oral arguments for January 7. The employer mandate was scheduled to take effect January 4, but the administration says it will not begin enforcing it until January 10, and will not enforce the health mandate until the legal dispute is resolved.

With the oral arguments unfolding the left wing justices have shown their political leanings in the questionings. Left-wing Justices Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan, and Sonia Sotomayor accepted the premises that the vaccines are effective and that the Omicron variant is just as dangerous as previous forms of COVID, if not more so (evidence so far indicates it is not).

Some of the alarming things were when Justice Breyer who was appointed by Democratic president Bill Clinton claimed the hospitals “…are full almost to the point of the maximum.”

Which is not true even in the slightest. Another odd moment is when Sotomayor asked, what’s the difference between this and telling employers where sparks are flying in the workplace, workers have to wear a mask?” National Federation of Independent Business attorney Scott Keller replied that sparks are “presumably because there’s a machine that’s unique to that workplace,” to which Sotomayor made a potentially-telling comparison.

“Why is the human being like a machine if it’s spewing a virus, blood-borne viruses,” asked Sotomayor. “Are you questioning Congress’ power or desire that OSHA do this if already in 1991 it told OSHA to issue regulations with respect to Hep C and B?”

Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito are skeptical of the mandates realizing anything not in the purview of the constitution is regulated to the authority of individual states and their legislatures not the federal government. With Chief Justice John Roberts even acknowledging that the federal mandates were entering a sphere of authority historically and constitutionally reserved for the states.

While its to early to tell which way the court will go one thing is for sure we all hope its in the direction of freedom and constitutional preservation.



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