amy coney barrett On Friday, the United States Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case challenging the Biden administration’s federal COVID-19 vaccine or test mandate for employers with more than 100 employees. During questioning, Justice Amy Coney Barrett pressed attorneys arguing in favor of President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate, enforced through the federal government’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration, as to how long OSHA expected the emergency to last, thus giving the federal agency authority to enact the mandate without comment from Congress.
As SCOTUS Blog pointed out, Elizabeth Prelogar, the U.S. Solicitor General arguing on behalf of the Biden administration, maintains that OSHA is simply exercising “the power that Congress gave it under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, which directs OSHA to issue emergency rules when it determines that a rule is ‘necessary’ to protect employees from a ‘grave danger’ from exposure to ‘physically harmful’ ‘agents’/or ‘new hazards” because COVID-19 meets those comments and threatens unvaccinated workers.
As for why OSHA can enact this without comment from Congress, OSHA’s “emergency rules can go into effect immediately, without the notice-and-comment procedures normally required for agency rulemaking,” SCOTUS Blog added.
However, Barrett pressured pro-mandate attorneys as to when […]