A U.S. judge in Texas on Friday blocked the Biden administration from enforcing an executive order requiring federal employees to be vaccinated against Covid-19.
The ruling marks the latest setback for President Joe Biden, whose efforts to boost U.S. vaccination rates through workplace safety rules have been met repeated obstacles in the courts.
Judge Jeffrey Brown, an appointee of former President Donald Trump, wrote in a 20-page ruling that Biden’s executive order “amounts to a presidential mandate that all federal employees consent to vaccination against COVID-19 or lose their jobs.”
“Because the President’s authority is not that broad, the court will enjoin the second order’s enforcement,” read Brown’s ruling in U.S. District Court in Galveston, Texas.
The judge cited last week’s Supreme Court decision blocking a federal rule that would have required workers at large companies to either get vaccinated or face weekly Covid testing. At the same time, the high court voted to allow a separate vaccine mandate for medical facilities that take Medicare or Medicaid payments.