Biden Asks DOJ For Opinion About Federal Vaccine Mandate
Today, President Biden slipped some significant news. He asked DOJ (presumably OLC) whether the federal government can impose a federal vaccine mandate.
“I asked the Justice Department to determine whether they’re able to do that legally, and they can. Local communities can do that, local businesses can do that,” the president said. “It’s still a question whether the federal government can mandate the whole country. I don’t know that.”
I have four immediate reactions.
First, is there sufficient statutory authority to impose such a mandate? Of course Congress could enact a new statute. But Congress doesn’t actually legislate anymore. It’s more likely that the President relies on some extant authority. To impose the eviction moratorium, the CDC relied on fairly generalized statutes that concern quarantines and the like. And many
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