Biden asks court to reinstate vaccine policy

Coronavirus Vaccine

President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the economy in the South Court Auditorium on the White House campus, Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

WASHINGTON (The Hill) — The Biden administration asked a federal court Tuesday to reinstate a workplace vaccine mandate that was put on hold earlier in November, as officials seek to boost vaccination numbers heading into the winter months.

In court papers filed overnight, the administration urged a Cincinnati-based federal appeals court to lift a court order blocking the public health rule, which requires larger businesses to have employees receive the COVID-19 vaccine or undergo regular testing and mask-wearing.

“Delaying this standard would endanger many thousands of people and would likely cost many lives per day,” government lawyers argued. “With the reopening of workplaces and the emergence of the highly transmissible delta variant, the threat to workers is ongoing and overwhelming.”

The move comes amid an uptick of COVID-19 cases nationwide as the U.S. heads into its second holiday season during the pandemic, with many families that may have skipped gatherings last year now planning to gather this Thanksgiving.

The Tuesday filing is the most significant legal move the administration has made since the vaccine mandate case was moved earlier this month to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit, where numerous legal challenges have been combined into a single lawsuit.

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