The Biden administration petitioned a federal court Tuesday to immediately lift a stay on the government’s COVID-19 vaccine and testing requirement for private businesses, citing an “ongoing and overwhelming” threat from the illness.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) filed its request with the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, picked by lottery last week to consolidate numerous legal challenges filed against the federal order. The Daily Wire was first to file a legal challenge against the Biden administration rule in the Sixth Circuit and is poised to lead the court battle against the federal government.
The Justice Department request to lift the stay comes over two weeks after the order was originally stayed by the Fifth Circuit.
“Before the various petitions for review were assigned to this Court, the Fifth Circuit granted a stay and enjoined the implementation and enforcement of the Standard,” the petition says, referring to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) rule. “The Fifth Circuit’s stay should be lifted immediately.”
The Fifth Circuit stayed the OSHA regulation on November 6, citing “grave statutory and constitutional issues.” A three-judge panel at the court later wrote that the regulation “grossly exceeds OSHA’s statutory authority.”
“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) that have more than a little bearing on workers’ varying degrees of susceptibility to the supposedly ‘grave danger’ the Mandate purports to address,” the panel wrote.
The DOJ argued that the Fifth Circuit erred in issuing the stay, claiming that the federal government had statutory authority to compel such sweeping action after it “reasonably concluded that the highly contagious and virulent COVID-19 virus presents a ‘grave danger’ — that is, a threat of great harm or injury — to employees.”
The federal government also took shots at the rule’s numerous legal challengers, which include The Daily Wire. Petitioners were given until December 3 to respond to the DOJ.
“[P]etitioners have not shown that their claimed injuries outweigh the interest in protecting employees from a dangerous virus while this litigation proceeds,” the DOJ wrote. “Petitioners’ asserted injuries are speculative and depend heavily on minor compliance costs or predictions about how employees may respond that are at odds with empirical evidence addressed by the agency. These claimed injuries do not justify delaying a Standard that will save thousands of lives and prevent hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations.”
The Daily Wire sued the federal government on November 4, hours after OSHA’s order was published in the federal register and roughly two months after Biden announced his broad federal action. The Daily Wire also launched a petition for signees to express support for its lawsuit against Biden’s COVID-19 order against private business.
“The Daily Wire will not comply with President Biden’s tyrannical vaccine mandate, and we are suing the Biden Administration to put a stop to their gross overreach,” Daily Wire co-founder and co-CEO Jeremy Boreing said at the time. “President Biden, the federal government, social media, and the establishment media have conspired to rob Americans of their freedoms in the name of public health. They have broken faith with the American people through conflicting messaging, false information, and by suppressing data and perspectives with which they disagree.”
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