U.S. Supreme Court blocks vaccine mandate in high-profile case

Published 10:21 am Friday, January 14, 2022

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The U.S. Supreme Court has blocked in a 6-3 decision a federal vaccine mandate that would have affected more than 80 million Americans. The High Court reinstated the nationwide stay won by Louisiana grocery store owner Brandon Trosclair, owner of BST Holdings LLC, and a group of Texas employees represented by the national Liberty Justice Center (LJC) and the Louisiana-based Pelican Institute. The Jan. 13 ruling represents a historic victory against government overreach and intrusion into the lives of American citizens, and a tremendous triumph over egregious federal policies that have grossly violated Americans’ fundamental rights, according to LJC and the Pelican Institute.
“Today’s ruling represents a monumental victory for all Americans, and a reminder that the Biden Administration and the federal government cannot rule by executive fiat,” said Patrick Hughes, president and co-founder of the Liberty Justice Center. “The Supreme Court saw this mandate for what it really is – an attempt to bypass Congress and the will of the American people. This mandate represented the most egregious overreach by the federal government in a generation, and every American owes Brandon Trosclair and the other brave plaintiffs in this lawsuit a debt of gratitude for fighting to protect their rights. Today’s ruling is a clear victory for Americans’ fundamental rights and the rule of law.”
Trosclair employs nearly 500 people across 16 grocery stores in Louisiana and Mississippi. His lawsuit, BST Holdings v. OSHA, was filed in November and was responsible for the initial suspension of the federal vaccine mandate at that time.
“Today’s victory should be celebrated by all Americans,” said Trosclair. “I filed this lawsuit because I felt it was my duty to stand up for my employees, business owners and my fellow Americans to block this illegal mandate and protect our rights. I am relieved that this relentless government intrusion into our lives and businesses is now being pushed back by our highest court, and I am humbled and honored to have played a role in this pivotal moment in history.”
Sarah Harbison, General Counsel at the Pelican Institute for Public Policy said the decision is an historic victory against illegal government overreach.

“The Supreme Court’s decision to halt the illegal vaccine mandate is a win for American workers and business owners in every corner of the country. Business owners like Brandon Trosclair fought and beat the Biden Administration on behalf of their team members and communities to keep the government out of individuals’ private health care decisions.”
The court lays out in its decision the idea that regulating the health of the general public falls outside of the power delegated to OSHA by Congress.

“Applicants are likely to succeed on the merits of their claim that the Secretary lacked authority to impose the mandate. Administrative agencies are creatures of statute. They accordingly possess only the authority that Congress has provided,” reads an excerpt from the decision.

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“The question, then, is whether the Act plainly authorizes the Secretary’s mandate. It does not,” continues the decision.

“It is telling that OSHA, in its half century of existence, has never before adopted a broad public health regulation of this kind—addressing a threat that is untethered, in any causal sense, from the workplace,” reads another portion of the decision.

“Congress has nowhere clearly assigned so much power to OSHA,” continues the decision with Justice Gorsuch concurring.
BST Holdings, LLC v. OSHA was filed Nov. 5, 2021, in U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans.
The Liberty Justice Center is a nonprofit, public-interest litigation center that fights to protect Americans’ fundamental constitutional rights. Its team of expert constitutional attorneys fights to protect workers’ rights and free speech, combat cancel culture and government overreach and improve the lives of everyday Americans. The Liberty Justice Center is best known for its 2018 U.S. Supreme Court victory in Janus v. AFSCME.

Learn more about the Liberty Justice Center at LibertyJusticeCenter.org.
The Pelican Institute says in its literature that it believes every person should have the opportunity to flourish. The Institute’s mission is to research and develop policy solutions to address the most significant barriers to opportunity in Louisiana. The organization educates the public about the benefits of individual liberty and free enterprise, turning great ideas into powerful policy solutions that make a meaningful difference in people’s lives.