Air Force barred from booting unvaccinated — Analysis
A US court order forbids the entire branch from enforcing Biden’s vaccine mandate
On Thursday, a federal judge in Ohio certified a nationwide class action lawsuit against US Air Force. He also issued a restraining order prohibiting military branches from mandating Covid-19 vaccinations on religiously-exempt airmen.
Judge Matthew McFarland directed the Air Force to stop mandatory vaccinations for all active-duty military personnel and reserves who objected on religious grounds. The order is temporary and expires in 14 days, during which time President Joe Biden’s Secretary of the Air Force, Frank Kendall III, is required to make his case for the mandate to stand.
The case was brought by a few dozen airmen stationed at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, but McFarland’s ruling impacts more than 9,000 service members nationally and internationally who have sought religious exemptions from the jab. Court documents show that the Air Force approved only 86 of these requests by June 1.
The outcome of the case could be uncertain if it is brought before higher courts. In April, the US Supreme Court decided against an Air Force Officer who had refused to get vaccinated for religious reasons. While the court didn’t give any reason for its decision, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch, all conservative justices, disapproved.
The active duty Air Force personnel were to have their shots by November 2021. Reservists, Air National Guard members and members of the Air National Guard had until January to receive the vaccine. The military’s mandatory vaccine policy was imposed by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and approved by Biden last August.
The US Army has approximately 268,858 military personnel and about 50,710 civilian staff. “partially vaccinated,”Pentagon data. This number counts those not up to date on their shots, and does not include those who haven’t received a single dose.
Last week, the US Army announced that troops who have not been vaccinated will no longer receive any pay and may be fired from their military service. Last week, the deadline to get vaccine for National Guardsmen and part-time Army Reservesmen expired. This means that more than 60,000.
According to Breitbart statistics, 6,400 military personnel have been expelled for refusing the shot. The majority of these were Marines.
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