The state of Florida, under Gov. Ron DeSantis, is filing suit against the Biden administration—and NASA—to halt the COVID-19 vaccine mandate imposed on federal contractors. The lawsuit, announced by Attorney General Ashley Moody, argues that even if Biden had the authority to carry out such a mandate under the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949, doing so would still be unconstitutional because “the manner in which they were enacted violates fundamental principles of administrative and procurement law.” The lawsuit alleges the government is simply paying “lip service” to improve the economy and federal procurement efficiency and that the real goal is to “get more people vaccinated and decrease the spread of COVID-19.” However, the latter has been made very clear by the Biden administration since day one.
The state unabashedly claims that the mandate would cause irreparable harm and “interfere with Florida’s employment policies and threaten Florida with economic harm and the loss of federal contracts,” including its frequent collaborations with the U.S. space program. DeSantis’ administration has resisted COVID prevention strategies since the beginning of the pandemic; Florida has reported nearly 59,000 deaths from the virus.