U.S. court upholds block on Biden’s vaccine order for federal workers

(Reuters) – A federal appeals court in New Orleans on Thursday upheld a judge’s ruling blocking enforcement of President Joe Biden’s 2021 executive order requiring all federal employees take a COVID-19 vaccine.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit said that, contrary to arguments by the Biden administration, the judge had jurisdiction to issue a nationwide mandate against the requirement.

A three-member panel of the Fifth Circuit overturned that ruling in April last year.

Biden issued his executive order in September 2021, saying that some 3.5 million federal employees or contractors who failed to get the vaccine faced discipline or firing. Exemptions were made for religious or medical reasons.

(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Himani Sarkar)