All 50 GOP senators banded together to formally challenge President Biden’s vaccine requirement for private businesses, which they describe as an “unconstitutional mandate.”
Indiana Sen. Mike Braun led fellow Republican senators in filing a resolution of disapproval over the Biden-ordered Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirement, which mandates that employers with more than 100 people on staff must force inoculation, or weekly COVID testing as a term of continued employment.
The resolution, which was filed under the Congressional Review Act, is guaranteed a floor vote and is filibuster-proof. A simple majority vote, which only requires the support of a single Democratic senator’s participation, would then move on to the house. Braun plans to set the vote for next month.
“Republicans are united against President Biden’s vaccine mandate for businesses, but this federal overreach is not a partisan issue, and the mass firings and worsening labor shortages that will result from this mandate are affecting Americans in all 50 states,” Braun remarked in a statement.
“I encourage Americans to make their voice heard to their representatives on this issue, and we welcome any Democratic member of the Senate to join us in overturning this unconstitutional mandate causing turmoil across the country,” he continued.
The OSHA rule is set to be implemented on Jan. 4, and will affect 84 million American workers. Employees who “willfully” violate the order could face almost $14,000 for each occurrence, while defiant employers could be charged up to $136,532.
The Nov. 4 OSHA order was temporarily suspended by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals earlier last week. The judges wrote that the mandate was “staggeringly overbroad.”
“Rather than a delicately handled scalpel, the Mandate is a one-size-fits-all sledgehammer that makes hardly any attempt to account for differences in workplaces (and workers),” they said.
More than 30 federal lawsuits in at least 27 states have been filed to challenge the mandate. They will be combined into a single challenge that will be heard by the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, as the Department of Justice fights to get the order reimplemented.