A federal appeals court in New Orleans has blocked President Joe Biden’s order that federal employees must receive the COVID-19 vaccination. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected arguments that the president has the same authority as a private corporation’s CEO to mandate employee vaccinations. The ruling maintains the status quo for federal employee vaccines, upholding a preliminary injunction blocking the mandate issued by a federal judge in January 2022. The case will now return to that court for further arguments. Biden issued an executive order in September 2021 requiring vaccinations for all executive branch agency employees, with exceptions for medical and religious reasons. The case went to the 5th Circuit, with one panel of three judges refusing to immediately block the law, while another panel upheld Biden’s position.

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