Arizona Attorney General on Why He Sued Biden Over Vaccine Mandate

President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate is unconstitutional, Arizona Legal professional Basic Mark Brnovich says. 

Brnovich filed a lawsuit towards the president and different Biden administration officers on Tuesday, arguing that the vaccine mandate is an assault on state sovereignty. 

“[W]e know from studying Federalist 45 and Federalist 51 that folks like James Madison, who wrote the Structure, anticipated the states to push again towards the federal authorities,” Brnovich says.

The legal professional common, a Republican, additionally says, “Nowhere within the Structure does it present or does it enable the president or the federal authorities to require any type of vaccines.”

Final week, Biden signed an government order mandating the vaccination of all federal workers and contract staff. The president additionally directed the Division of Labor to jot down a rule mandating all organizations with 100 workers or extra to require all their workers be vaccinated or examined weekly. 

Brnovich says the president’s actions not solely violate American freedoms, but in addition the equal safety clause of the Structure.

The Arizona legal professional common joins “The Day by day Sign Podcast” to elucidate what he hopes to perform by means of the swimsuit.

We additionally cowl these tales:

  • Idaho places in place disaster requirements of care all through the state, citing the variety of COVID-19 sufferers requiring hospitalization.
  • After an article from The Day by day Sign and a press launch from The Heritage Basis, on-line retailer Amazon rescinds an advert ban for a brand new ebook launched by Heritage Basis scholar Mike Gonzalez. 
  • In response to a report by the Division of Homeland Safety’s Workplace of Inspector Basic, migrants, workers, and border communities had been uncovered to larger dangers of COVID-19 an infection by the division’s failure to adequately display incoming migrants for the illness.

Take heed to the podcast under or learn the flippantly edited transcript.

Virginia Allen : It’s my honor to be joined by Arizona Legal professional Basic Mark Brnovich. Legal professional Basic, thanks a lot for being right here.

Mark Brnovich: Thanks, Virginia, for having me, and hey to all my buddies on the market in Heritage world, together with John [Malcolm] and Hans [von Spakovsky].

Allen: Oh, it’s an actual, actual pleasure to have you ever right here, to have you ever again on the present. Final week, President Joe Biden signed an government order mandating that each one federal workers and contract staff have to be vaccinated. The president additionally directed the Division of Labor to jot down a rule mandating that organizations with 100 workers or extra must both require all their workers to be vaccinated or be examined weekly. Legal professional Basic, in response to the president’s mandate, you filed a lawsuit towards President Joe Biden and different members of the Biden administration. You argue that this vaccine mandate is unconstitutional. Why do you assume it’s unconstitutional?

Brnovich: Effectively, Virginia, let me provide you with a protracted reply and a brief reply. As you already know, and we’ve talked about this earlier than, is that I’m a first-generation American, and my household fled communism. And when your loved ones has simply not solely studied historical past, however lived it, you will have an important appreciation for a way distinctive freedom and liberty is, and the way vital this framework we’ve got in our nation with the Structure and the rule of regulation. And so I’ve been an enormous protector and defender of the rule of regulation my complete profession. And so at any time when there’s any type of authorized points that come up, my first query at all times is, “What does the Structure say? What does the regulation say?” And in order you already know, I’ve filed a number of lawsuits towards the federal authorities, even going again to my Goldwater [Institute] days when it’s come to points involving federalism and state sovereignty.

And so when the Biden administration points a federal vaccine mandate, and that’s what it’s, my first evaluation isn’t, “Effectively, is that good, is it unhealthy,” no matter, it’s, “Effectively, what does the Structure say?” What does the Structure say? And nowhere, nowhere within the Structure does it present or does it enable the president or the federal authorities to require any type of vaccines, or so that you can put something in your physique. , and I do know all the oldsters in Heritage world admire, that the federal authorities was designed to be a authorities of restricted powers. And we all know from studying Federalist 45 and Federalist 51 that folks like James Madison, who wrote the Structure, anticipated the states to push again towards the federal authorities, and particular person rights and liberties, police powers, public well being, security, welfare, had been designed to be left to the states.

And so we argue, and what I’ve stated, is a), the federal authorities, and particularly one particular person, the president, doesn’t have the ability to mandate any type of vaccine. And secondly, even when this administration in some way may try this, they will’t do it in a fashion that’s inconsistent with the Structure.

And by actually exempting the tens of millions of folks that have crossed the border illegally by giving them the choice whether or not to choose out, however not offering that very same choice to U.S. residents, they’re clearly violating the Equal Safety Clause of the Structure. And it completely breaks my coronary heart to say this, however apparently the Biden administration cares extra about folks in Central America and preserving their rights and liberties than they do about preserving the rights and liberties of hardworking American taxpayers.

Allen: , I feel that argument in regards to the Equal Safety Clause is absolutely fascinating. I need to discuss that extra in only a second, however first I need to point out… On Tuesday, you stated throughout a press name, quote, “This lawsuit is about federalism, constitutional rules, and the truth that the Biden administration has no authority below the Structure to mandate COVID-19 vaccines. Interval.” Clarify why federalism is such an vital issue on this argument.

Brnovich: In the beginning, we at all times must do not forget that the states created the federal authorities. And a whole lot of occasions, folks study in highschool… Or they used to, at the very least. You study at school that we’ve got the separation of powers. And children are taught, properly, it’s the judicial, the chief, legislative department, and … the separation of powers is designed to verify nobody turns into tyrannical or too massive.

However the final verify on federal authority and the last word separation of powers is on the states. The states had been designed to be a verify on the federal authorities. And that there’s this basic underlying premise that the framers understood, and we must always perceive, is that authorities doesn’t give us our rights. Our rights come from the creator, from God, and governments are instituted and designed to guard these rights.

And the Structure was written, and the framers had in thoughts, that the federal authorities solely had the powers and will solely train their enumerated powers. And other people like James Madison used to speak about the truth that rights and powers are simply totally different sides of the identical coin, as a result of they understood that the much less energy the federal authorities had, the extra rights people had. And so we’ve type of misplaced monitor of this.

And particularly the progressive motion—[former President]Woodrow Wilson—as that accelerated, this type of totally different philosophy arose that, “Wait a minute, if solely we had the consultants, if solely we had the correct folks operating authorities, if solely we create this bureaucratic state with extra federal companies, they’ll know what to do greatest, and so they can resolve and decide and select which rights and to must which individuals.” And that has dramatically led to the acceleration of energy in Washington, D.C.

And as energy will get concentrated in Washington, D.C., it turns into unaccountable, it turns into larger and larger, after which finally it turns into tyrannical. And that’s why these vaccine mandates, it’s so vital to push again with each weapon or each instrument we’ve got in our toolbox.

As a result of in the event you enable one particular person, one thing that not even King George may have dreamed of, one particular person to dictate to you or anybody else that it’s a must to inject one thing in your physique, that it’s a must to affirmatively get a medical remedy, then that signifies that the ability of the president is unfettered. It’s not tethered to the Structure. It’s not even tethered in present regulation. So there’s no statutory authority for what he’s doing, however extra importantly, there’s no constitutional authority for what he’s doing. And I do assume that if [Occupational Safety and Health Administration] finally ends up promulgating guidelines, which they’re going to, I feel these are all going to be constitutionally suspect.

Allen: Now we’ve got heard arguments, some saying that there really is precedent. They’ve referenced the 1905 Supreme Courtroom ruling, which is seven to 2 within the case of Jacobson v. Massachusetts. In that ruling, the town of Cambridge, Massachusetts declared that they may nice people who refused to take a smallpox vaccine. Is there a distinction between that ruling about 120 years in the past and what we’re seeing right now?

Brnovich: Completely. And it’s as soon as once more coming again to first rules and federalism—a republic, if we are able to preserve it. And the important thing distinction proper there within the Jacobson case is it was a state. And historically, the framers and our Structure offers that problems with public well being, security, welfare, train, what constitutes conventional police powers was one thing that was going to be left to the states.

So no matter what you concentrate on what we must always or shouldn’t do with COVID and pandemics and illness outbreaks, the underside line is that the federal authorities doesn’t have the authority, and it doesn’t have the authority even below the plain studying of Jacobson to do this. Second factor, I feel it’s vital to level out in that case itself, it was like a $5 nice. It was like a $5 one-time nice.

And the truth is that in the event you had been presenting folks with an possibility of claiming, “OK, you may both get the vaccine or have some de minimis penalty, a one-time penalty,” that’s possibly an actual selection.

However what the Biden administration is doing is mainly saying to folks is that you simply’re going to lose your job. You’re going to lose your livelihood. You might lose a multi-million greenback authorities contract. You might not be capable of present healthcare to aged and susceptible sufferers in the event you’re a physician, all as a result of Joe Biden thinks he is aware of what’s greatest for you. So that’s basically totally different from Jacobson, and so I feel that there’s a misplaced reliance on that. And simply as we’re speaking right here, Virginia, I simply couldn’t assist however assume again. I bear in mind even round that point interval, you had different instances like Champion v Ames, which went as much as the Supreme Courtroom, and I take into consideration that.

That handled playing and gaming … Congress had handed a regulation that prohibited the interstate transportation of lottery tickets. And it was a one-vote resolution. And the Supreme Courtroom at the moment struggled with whether or not the federal authorities may even prohibit the transportation of unlawful lottery tickets throughout state line by the U.S. Postal Service, as a result of that was an train of police energy. So we’ve come a great distance in 100 years. … Even 100 years in the past, the Supreme Courtroom understood that the police powers of the federal authorities had been extraordinarily restricted, and the police powers had been alleged to reside with the states. …

The Biden administration has clearly abdicated. In reality, they’re refusing to comply with present regulation. … Now we have a number of lawsuits towards the Biden administration the place we argue they’re not following present federal regulation, which they’re clearly not. So once they’re alleged to be following the regulation and the Structure, they don’t need to, however then they need to go forward and cavalierly or unilaterally decide and select how they will train their federal authority utterly inconsistent with the Structure. And I’m sorry, I really feel like I’m filibustering right here, however let me simply add one very last thing to this. I feel you already know, or possibly your listeners know, that I even have a lawsuit towards the Biden administration we filed towards [Treasury] Secretary [Janet] Yellen, which handled the COVID reduction invoice.
As soon as once more, a large switch of wealth and energy to D.C. However in that COVID reduction invoice, it offers that in the event you’re a state and also you get COVID reduction cash, you may’t lower state taxes. So take into consideration the dishonest and intellectually inconsistent arguments about what the Biden administration is doing. The federal authorities can ship somebody a $1,400 stimulus verify, however the state of Arizona can’t lower your taxes by $1,400? Why do you assume that’s? I might undergo you that’s as a result of it’s all in regards to the federal authorities attempting to manage you and your livelihood, and what our lawsuit argues is that this federal authorities can’t try this. It violates conventional notions of anti-commandeering.

In reality, the current PASPA case, the Newbie Sports activities Safety Act … we sided as soon as once more with the states towards the federal authorities when it got here as to if the states commandeered the states over playing points. However there are all kinds of those points the place in the event you take a look at the Ninth Modification and the Tenth Modification, the place that clearly units forth the powers of the federal authorities are enumerated and restricted, the Biden administration is simply blowing previous these boundaries. And so we’re combating them on a number of fronts, and this vaccine mandate is simply the newest one.

Allen: And the opposite a part of your lawsuit, as you talked about earlier, it has to do with the Equal Safety Clause of the Structure. Clarify that facet of the swimsuit, in the event you would.

Brnovich: Effectively, our Structure offers that everybody is equal below the regulation. And in reality, I feel that’s the rationale why so many individuals need to come to the US. We don’t want the Biden administration spending $300 million to determine that out. They need to come right here as a result of we’re the best nation, and we’re the best nation as a result of we’ve got a Structure, we’ve got stability, and we’ve got the rule of regulation. And so everyone seems to be equal below the regulation, however what the Biden administration has carried out is that they mainly stated that in the event you’ve come right here illegally, you’ve crossed our Southern border illegally, they might put you up in a resort in Scottsdale. They might put you on an airplane and ship you to Kansas or Virginia, Missouri, or wherever else. However you don’t must… You’ve the choice, in the event you’re right here illegally, whether or not to take the vaccine or not, the place as soon as once more, the Biden administration most likely has extra authority. However in the event you’re a U.S. citizen, it’s a must to get the vaccine.

And make no mistake about it, Virginia. I imply, that is simply the camel’s nostril below the tent. The Biden administration is mandating this now, however you see, they’ll find yourself mandating this for everybody, as a result of that is a few huge federal energy seize over controlling our lives. And so we, in our lawsuit, level out the inconsistency and the unconstitutionality of frankly treating non-citizens higher than residents. However make no mistake about it, nobody, nobody needs to be required to get the vaccine. However I feel that by us pointing that out and utilizing each weapon in our toolbox to attempt to battle again towards the Biden administration, we’ve got proven the chapter of what they’re doing and their concepts.

Allen: You filed the lawsuit with the U.S. District Courtroom of Arizona on Tuesday. Finally, what are you asking the courts for? What do you need to obtain by means of this lawsuit?

Brnovich: Effectively, we’re asking the courtroom to easily enjoin the Biden administration for mandating the vaccine for anybody, whether or not they’re a federal worker or not. And albeit, it breaks my coronary heart, as a result of I’ve had folks attain out to me. Look, I’m a middle-class child. I dwell in the identical neighborhood I grew up right here in Arizona, and I’ve had so many of us—lecturers, firefighters, regulation enforcement people—attain out and say, “Oh my gosh, it will have an effect on me regardless that I’m not a federal worker,” as a result of possibly their enterprise receives federal cash, or they’re a federal contractor. And so there are a whole lot of people which might be actually scared, they’re actually nervous. They fear not solely in regards to the constitutional arguments, however there’s been a whole lot of uncertainty due to what the Biden administration stated or hasn’t stated so far as the pandemic, and it worries people.

And there’s a whole lot of uncertainty now. There’s a whole lot of inconsistency. And so I’m going to do every part I can to push again towards the Biden administration and its unconstitutional mandates. This isn’t the ultimate step. This is step one. That is the primary salvo.

Or it’s a steady salvo, at the very least on my half, to push again towards federal overreach and to be sure that we’ve got a federal authorities that workouts its authority in a means that’s in step with the Structure, as a result of all of us must do not forget that there are two maladies dealing with this nation proper now. One was created in a Chinese language lab, and the opposite one’s emanating from the D.C. swamp. And we have to do every part we are able to to push again and battle towards this overreach popping out of Washington.

Allen: Legal professional Basic, final query earlier than we allow you to go. I do know that there’s been speak of possibly different states becoming a member of this lawsuit or submitting different comparable lawsuits in response to this vaccine mandate. Have you learnt the place we stand with that, if there are different states which might be getting concerned in the identical means you will have?

Brnovich: Yeah. My colleagues and I really simply despatched a letter to the Biden administration laying out why what they’re proposing is constitutionally suspect. I do know that we’re working even with different states, a few of my associate AGs, to develop extra authorized theories, extra lawsuits. … And this isn’t political, it’s in regards to the Structure. For those who imagine in federalism, in the event you imagine in particular person liberty, in the event you imagine in financial freedom and the dignity of each human being, each considered one of us must be combating again and pushing again towards this drastic energy seize by the Biden administration.

Allen: Legal professional Basic, thanks a lot on your time right now. We actually admire you approaching.

Brnovich: Thanks, Virginia.

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