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Supreme Court hearing oral arguments over Biden's vaccine mandate

Supreme Court Booster Shot
Posted at 1:25 PM, Jan 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-07 10:39:30-05

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Should businesses require their employees to get the COVID vaccine?

While a number of companies and institutions have their own requirements, not every business is doing it which is why President Joe Biden wants his vaccine mandate to take effect next month.

What's standing in his way? A Supreme Court hearing on Friday.

CASES ON THE RISE

The oral arguments come as the country faces another surge.

More than 103,000 people are currently hospitalized with COVID-19, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. The number has not been seen in more than four months.

Leaders in 27 states say Biden's vaccine mandate is unconstitutional. Over a dozen Republican attorneys general want the conservative-leaning court to strike it down.

WHAT BIDEN WANTS

The vaccine mandate is set to take effect on Feb. 9. It was delayed because of legal challenges.

Every private business with at least 100 employees would be required to mandate vaccines or implement rigorous testing.

Fines could be $14,000 per violation.

Additionally, the Biden administration wants to mandate every health care worker who works at a hospital that accepts federal funds to get the vaccine.

HOW WILL THE COURT RULE

How justices will rule is difficult to predict because so far this pandemic they have struck down some public health orders but allowed others to continue.

For instance, state vaccine mandates for health care workers in New York were allowed.

They also allowed a mandate at the University of Indiana to go ahead.

But those were not federal health orders which the Supreme Court hasn't been afraid to strike down.

Last year, justices ruled the CDC overstepped its authority by banning evictions.

At the center of all of this is the authority of the relatively unknown government organization, OSHA, which was created in 1970.

The Biden administration believes existing law gives the agency the authority to enforce vaccine mandates.

Regardless of what happens at the Supreme Court, the president is losing support among members of Congress regarding the vaccine mandate. Currently, a majority in the U.S. Senate oppose the mandate.