TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Thursday that the state of Florida has filed a new lawsuit against the Biden administration challenging an order imposing a vaccine mandate on federal contractors.
An executive order signed by President Joe Biden in September requires employees of the executive branch and contractors who do business with the federal government to be vaccinated against COVID-19 with no option to test out.
“That’s not the way we think business should be done,” DeSantis said during a Lakeland press conference.
The governor added that the lawsuit was filed in the Middle District of Florida and seeks a preliminary injunction, that could block enforcement of the mandate, which is scheduled to take effect in December.
According to a news release from the office of Attorney General Ashley Moody, the filing outlines “harm” to the state, universities, Space Florida and the Florida Department of Education.
“The President has authority to protect the federal workforce and promote efficiency in federal contracting in this way,” a statement from the White House said. “The Department of Justice and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission have already determined that COVID vaccines can be required by employers.”
Despite this, Gov. DeSantis claimed that an unsuccessful challenge of the mandate could prompt disruptions in the economy.
“Just think of all the airline workers that are balking at this,” DeSantis said, citing COVID-19 vaccination-related headlines circling the airline industry.
Reports have suggested that defiant workers make up a small fraction of the overall workforce, with many cities, states and businesses reporting that more than 90% of their employees are complying with mandates.
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