Supreme Court vaccine mandate ruling imminent

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WASHINGTON (NewsNation Now) — The Supreme Court’s ruling on the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccine-or-test requirement for large employers could be imminent.

The court heard arguments last week on a challenge to the mandate, which applies to businesses with at least 100 employees. Conservative justices on the court appeared to view the administration’s requirement as overstepping government authority. The court seemed more open to a separate vaccine mandate for most health care workers.

This is the first time the high court was set to weigh in on the administration’s COVID-19 vaccine policies, although justices have turned away pleas to block state-level mandates before.

In October 2021, the Supreme Court upheld Indiana University’s vaccine mandate. It did the same for a mandate for health care workers in Maine, and then again for health care employees in New York.

The Supreme Court has not always supported the government’s actions during the pandemic, however. A ban in New York on in-person religious events was overturned, as was the federal government’s eviction moratorium.

Brian Dean Abramson, an adjunct professor of vaccine law at Florida International University’s College of Law, said on “NewsNation Prime” on Sunday that the mandate could be stopped or at least altered by the court.

“Certainly I think it is unlikely to go into effect exactly as it stands,” Abramson said.

Legal challenges to the Biden administration’s policies from business groups and Republican-led states are in their early stages, but the outcome at the high court will probably determine the fate of vaccine requirements affecting more than 80 million people.

You can read the full NewsNation poll here.

The expected decisions comes after NewsNation poll of 1,000 registered voters, completed this week by Decision Desk HQ, found that mask requirements are more popular than vaccine requirements. The poll found more people approve of indoor mask requirements than vaccine requirements — and by nearly 20 percentage points.

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About 33% of all Americans have received their booster shot, according to data to compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More than 62% of the population is considered fully vaccinated, according to CDC data.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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