Yesterday a federal judge in St. Louis blocked the Biden administration from enforcing a COVID injection mandate on thousands of health care workers in ten states. The ruling by U.S. District Judge Matthew Schelp applies to a coalition of suing states that includes Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming. Similar lawsuits also are pending in other states.
The ruling is "huge," according to Representative Andy Biggs (R-Arizona), chairman of the House Freedom Caucus.
"And couple that with the Fifth Circuit's ruling and now the Sixth Circuit is bundling a bunch of cases together, I think you're seeing a tremendous movement here to demonstrate that these mandates are unconstitutional," says the GOP lawmaker.
Biggs also says it would appear the president is more interested in a dictatorship than our form of government.
In all, 34 objections have been filed in all 11 regional circuit courts. Tony Perkins, president of Family Research Council, says the glut of legal challenges are delivering a clear message.
"To me, this should make a lot of what this administration is doing as suspect," says Perkins. "They seem to be overreaching in a lot of areas. This is the second mandate to be put on ice based upon the constitutional limitations that the Executive office has."
The Cincinnati-based Sixth U.S. Circuit of Appeals was selected on November 16 to hear several challenges to the president's COVID injection mandate that will be consolidated. Eleven of the 16 full-time judges in that court were appointed by Republican presidents – six by President Donald Trump. The Fifth Circuit in New Orleans, which also has a majority of judges who were appointed by Republicans, had earlier issued a ruling that put the mandate on hold.
Biden's employer mandate calls for businesses with more than 100 workers to require employees to be injected by January 4 or wear masks and be tested weekly for COVID-19. Exemptions are provided for religious reasons and for those who work at home or only outdoors.
Associated Press contributed to this story.