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Biden Contractor Vaccine Mandate Now With Four Appeals Courts

Jan. 14, 2022, 3:57 PM

The Eighth Circuit will be the latest appeals court to hear a challenge to President Joe Biden‘s order that requires government-contractor workers to get the Covid-19 vaccine.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit will join three other federal appeals court to consider a challenge to the measure. A coalition of states— Arkansas, Alaska, Iowa, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming— filed one of several lawsuits that sought to block the mandate for companies that do business with the federal government.

U.S. Magistrate Judge David Noce of the Eastern District of Missouri last month sustained a preliminary injunction against the executive order.

The Justice Department also asked the court to remove the block on the challenge as the appeal moves forward.

Appeals also are ongoing in the Eleventh, Fifth, and Sixth circuits, respectively, over a nationwide injunction against the measure from a Georgia federal court, and narrower ones from federal judges in Kentucky and Louisiana.

They come as the U.S. Supreme Court halted a separate effort from the Biden administration to boost Covid-19 inoculation rates. The justices on Thursday blocked the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s regulation that would have required 80 million workers to get shots or periodic tests, but allowed a separate rule for health-care workers to take effect.

The federal contractor mandate—which won’t be enforced while litigation proceeds—would apply to roughly a quarter of the U.S. workforce, and affect businesses including Lockheed Martin Corp., Microsoft Corp., Alphabet Inc.‘s Google, and General Motors Co.

The case is Missouri v. Biden, E.D. Mo., No. 4:21-cv-01300, notice of appeal 1/14/22.

To contact the reporter on this story: Erin Mulvaney in Washington at emulvaney@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Jay-Anne B. Casuga at jcasuga@bloomberglaw.com; Martha Mueller Neff at mmuellerneff@bloomberglaw.com

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