Florida Sues Biden Administration Over Federal COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates
16:07 GMT 28.10.2021 (Updated: 16:42 GMT 28.10.2021)
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The US state of Florida has filed a lawsuit against the Biden administration challenging its federal order mandating compulsory COVID-19 vaccinations for all workers in companies with government contracts, Governor Ron DeSantis said on Thursday.
“We are… going to pursue litigation today: The state of Florida has filed another lawsuit against the Biden administration challenging the federal order on vaccine mandates,” DeSantis said in a televised press conference. “It is not right for the federal government to require those contracts and try to shoehorn things in.”
28 October 2021, 03:18 GMT
DeSantis explained that lawsuit has been filed in Tampa, Florida, and the state government is seeking a preliminary injunction to stop the process.
“That is not the way business should be done: We do not think they have the authority to do this. … [The lawsuit has been] filed in the Tampa division we are going to seek a preliminary injunction. [The mandate] exceeds the current administration’s authority under the federal law and the Constitution,” he said.
State Attorney General Ashley Moody added that mandating vaccines was not the role of the federal government and that it had “absolutely no right, none whatsoever” to do so. Moody said the mandate was a complete and gross overreach of the federal government into the personal autonomy of US workers.
The lawsuit is also reportedly targeting NASA, NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, the Pentagon and several White House officials from the Office of Management and Budget over the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for federal contractors.
According to DeSantis, NASA, whose key launch base is the Kennedy Space Center on Florida's central Atlantic coast, "is and will continue to seek to impose the Biden administration's unlawful requirements to Florida".
The lawsuit, which was first obtained by Fox News, has cited the "frequent contracts" and "current contractual relationships" NASA has with Florida.
"Because the government’s unlawful vaccine requirement seeks to interfere with Florida’s employment policies and threaten Florida with economic harm and the loss of federal contracts, the State seeks relief from this Court", the suit reads.
The Daily Mail has cited a DeSantis spokesperson, Christina Pushaw, as saying, "Governor DeSantis is committed to protecting Floridians’ jobs, including those who work for federal contractors. No one should have to choose between a jab and a job, or give up their bodily autonomy due to unlawful and unscientific edicts".
The lawsuit follows an executive order signed by US President Joe Biden in the summer requiring that all workers in the executive branch be vaccinated against coronavirus. POTUS has also signed an order to require vaccine mandates for businesses with over 100 workers.
11 October 2021, 12:03 GMT
Back in September, the US president also signed an order requiring federal contractors to mandate vaccinations and ensure employees are fully vaccinated by 8 December.