Governor Brian Kemp and Attorney General Chris Carr announced Friday that the State of Georgia has filed a lawsuit challenging the Biden administration’s employer vaccine mandate. The Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) setting forth the mandate was published in the Federal Register on Nov. 5, 2021.
“In addition to vilifying Americans for their personal choices, Joe Biden’s vaccine mandates are unlawful and a recipe for economic disaster,” said Governor Kemp. “With inflation skyrocketing, the supply chain screeching to a halt, and job creators across the country desperately searching for more workers, Biden is pouring gasoline on a fire. This federal government power-grab defies reason, and Attorney General Carr and I will not allow this administration to force hardworking Georgians to choose between their livelihoods and this vaccine.”
“This unlawful mandate is yet another example of the Biden administration’s complete disregard for the Constitutional rights afforded to our state and our citizens,” said Attorney General Carr. “The federal government has no authority to force healthcare decisions on Georgia’s companies and its employees under the guise of workplace safety. We are fighting back against this unprecedented abuse of power to stop this mandate before it causes irreparable harm to our state and its economy.”
The lawsuit challenges the ETS as issued by the Biden administration’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the United States Department of Labor. Specifically, the lawsuit asserts the ETS:
• Exceeds the Department of Labor’s statutory authority;
• Fails to comply with the standards for issuing an ETS; and
• Conflicts with the First Amendment and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
Georgia has joined the states of Florida and Alabama, along with several private employers, in filing the lawsuit with the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. Private employers that are also parties in the action include the Georgia Highway Contractors Association, the Georgia Motor Trucking Association and Robinson Paving Co.
Last week, Governor Kemp and Attorney General Carr filed a lawsuit against President Biden’s vaccine mandate for federal contractors.