COLUMBIA, SC (WSPA) — Over the weekend, a federal appeals court issued a temporary block on President Joe Biden’s vaccine or weekly testing mandate for businesses with more than 100 employees.
The U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals granted the Emergency Stay on the enforcement of the federal mandate Saturday. The state of South Carolina joined Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Utah and businesses in a lawsuit filed against the Biden Administration over the mandate.
South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster reacted to the news Monday afternoon. He once again called the mandate ‘unconstitutional’. He said, “It’s a grave error. It’s not within the purview of the federal government to be doing that.”
The mandate requires workers at businesses with more than a 100 employees get the COVID-19 vaccine or undergo weekly testing if they decide to remain unvaccinated. Companies are required to comply with the mandate by January 4th. They could face fines of up to $14,000 per violation.
When asked what he had to say to the Biden Administration, Governor McMaster said, “They’re doing more harm than good. They ought to read the Constitution. It’s easy to read. If you read it, there’s no doubt they are off the rails.”
Over the weekend, the Biden Administration said they are prepared to defend the mandate in court. White House Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the Department of Labor has a responsibility to protect workers from a grave danger.
She said they have the authority to implement and enforce a mandate like this. “This is about keeping people safe in the workplace,” she went on to say, “This past year more than 750,000 people have died from COVID. There’s approximately 1300 people a day who continue to die from COVID. If that’s not a grave danger, I don’t know what is.”
The Biden Administration is expected to respond to the emergency stay on Monday.