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Sen. Marshall demands Congressional review of presidential COVID-19 vaccine mandate

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FILE(Source: 19 News)
Published: Sep. 15, 2021 at 6:40 PM CDT|Updated: 16 hours ago
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Senator Roger Marshall has demanded a Congressional review of President Joe Biden’s recent COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

U.S. Senator Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) says he demands a Congressional review of President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate on private employees before it goes into effect. He said he urges Congress to oppose the unlawful and unnecessary federal command.

“President Biden’s vaccination decree is an all-out assault on private business, our civil liberties, and our entire constitutional system of limited government. The White House continues to ignore the Constitution as well as the science proving the benefits of natural immunity so they can justify an Executive Order that wipes out Americans’ control over their own healthcare options. Simply put, the Administration is overstepping its authority and we must hold them accountable with a formal challenge under the Congressional Review Act,” said Senator Marshall. “As a former physician who believes the vaccine has saved countless lives, I stand by my belief that receiving the COVID-19 vaccine is a personal choice that should be made following a conversation with one’s doctor instead of being administered across the board by government decree.”

On Sep. 8, President Biden issued a vaccine and testing mandate for private businesses with over 100 employees, which Sen. Marshall said will affect over 80 million Americans. The mandate threatens $14,000 fines for those that do not comply.

According to Sen. Marshall, not only is the mandate a highly inappropriate invasion of a personal decision for residents, but it also threatens to worsen the current labor shortage. He said the federal directive that will impact tens of millions of Americans warrants review.

“Small businesses face daily challenges from pandemic requirements, locating qualified workers, rampant inflation, and supply chain disruptions. Small business owners and their employees want to operate in a safe and healthy manner that allows them to stay open. Additional mandates, enforcement, and penalties will further threaten the fragile small business recovery,” said the National Federation of Small Businesses.

Once the Biden Administration has formally issued the mandate, Sen. Marshall said he and Sens. Mike Braun (R-In.), Dan Sullivan (R-Ark.), Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), and Mike Lee (R-Ut.), as well as Congressman Fred Keller (PA-12) will bring git before Congress for review either under the Congressional Review Act or other appropriate means.

“President Biden has vastly overstepped the authority of the federal government by issuing vaccine mandates and testing requirements for private businesses. We will not sit by as this President chips away at liberty this country was built on, and that’s why we are formally challenging this rule under the Congressional Review Act,” said Sen. Mike Braun.

According to Sen. Marshall, the mandates are expected to force private-sector employers with over 100 employees to become fully vaccinated or produce at least weekly negative test results for employees. As announced, he said the federal employee and contractor plan does not include the option of weekly testing rather than taking a vaccine.

“This rule is unconstitutional overreach by the President of the United States, pure and simple. Individual freedoms and the rule of law are too often an afterthought with this administration, while broken promises continue piling up. We all want to put this pandemic behind us, but the decision to vaccinate is an individual choice, and should not be mandated by the federal government,” said Senator Dan Sullivan. “The federal government does not have the constitutional or statutory authority to take this action, and to make this clear we will be exercising our Congressional authority to overturn this rule with a Congressional Review Act Resolution.”

To implement the mandate, Sen. Marshal said the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is expected to promote an Emergency Temporary Standard that will stay in place for six months. After this time, he said OSHA will promote a permanent standard. Development of a permanent standard in six months would outpace the 93 months it usually takes the administration to develop and finalize permanent standards.

“While I believe in the effectiveness of the vaccine—a product of the Trump Administration’s remarkable Operation Warp Speed—this top-down federal order, which President Biden vowed he would not issue, not only intrudes on what should be a personal decision for each American, but it will make it even harder for small business owners to hire and retain employees,” said Senator Hagerty.

Historically, Sen. Marshal said OSHA has used its ETS authority sparingly, with many orders like the mandate being successfully challenged in courts. Of the nine times OSHA has issued an ETS, he said the courts have fully vacated or stayed the ETS in four cases and partially vacated an ETS in one case.

“The President cannot rule by decree. President Biden’s mandate is the most egregious incursion on the medical rights of Americans in our nation’s history, and it clearly exceeds the President’s power. This resolution will allow Congress to protect the American people and the Constitution,” said Senator Mike Lee.

According to Sen. Marshall, the Congressional Review Act can be used by Congress to overturn specific federal agency regulations and actions through a joint resolution of disapproval. He said if a CRA joint resolution of disapproval is approved by both houses of Congress and signed by the President, or if Congress successfully overrides a presidential veto, the rule at issue is invalidated.

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