Biden Admin Promises to Ignore DC Court Ruling That Protects Religiously Exempt From Firing
A Washington, D.C., district court judge issued a last-minute order Thursday telling the Biden administration that both civilian and active-duty military plaintiffs should not be terminated as they await a ruling after they sued the administration over religious exemptions to COVID-19 vaccines, Fox News reported.
“None of the civilian employee plaintiffs will be subject to discipline while his or her request for a religious exception is pending,” read a minute order from District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly obtained by Fox News.
The Biden administration, which had until noon on Friday to respond, said in a filing that it would not agree to halt the discipline and termination of any employees in the process of seeking a religious exemption to the vaccine pending the court’s ruling on the temporary restraining order (TRO) motion.
“It is Plaintiffs’ burden to demonstrate impending irreparable harm…but Plaintiffs offer nothing beyond speculation to suggest that their religious exception requests will be denied and that they will be disciplined at all, much less on the first day that such discipline is theoretically possible,” wrote the Biden administration in its filing Friday.
Essentially, the Biden administration argued plaintiffs who are suing for to keep both their bodily autonomy and livelihood would have to prove that the US government will NOT unfairly deny their religious exemption. The statement is of course a subjective one that could invite many different viewpoints on what is considered a ‘valid’ religious exemption request and what is not.
The judge on Thursday also asked the administration to agree that “active duty military plaintiffs, whose religious exception requests have been denied, will not be disciplined or separated during the pendency of their appeals.”
The judge also ordered that defendants in the Biden administration file a supplemental notice by noon on Friday indicating whether they will honor the ruling that no plaintiff will be disciplined or terminated pending the court’s ruling. There was also a promise by the court to schedule another briefing should the administration disregard the ruling.
Twenty plaintiffs sued Joe Biden and members of his administration in their official capacity over the Sept. 9 executive order mandating vaccines for federal employees, according to a civil action suit filed Sunday.
“The Biden administration has shown an unprecedented, cavalier attitude toward the rule of law and an utter ineptitude at basic constitutional contours,” said the plaintiffs’ attorney Michael Yoder in a statement to Fox News.
“This combination is dangerous to American liberty,” Yoder continued. “Thankfully, our Constitution protects and secures the right to remain free from religious persecution and coercion. With this order, we are one step closer to putting the Biden administration back in its place by limiting government to its enumerated powers. It’s time citizens and courts said no to tyranny. The Constitution does not need to be rewritten, it needs to be reread.”