Repeated Defeats for Joe Biden in the Supreme Court

In a series of high-stakes legal confrontations, the Supreme Court has dealt President Biden defeat after defeat after defeat.

Possibly the most humiliating failure for the administration so far has been the failure of a COVID-19 vaccine mandate that would have affected a wide range of businesses.

Vaccine Mandates

The Supreme Court ruled on Thursday the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) vaccine mandate for enterprises with 100 or more employees could not be enforced in its entirety.

Although conservatives objected to the OSHA mandate, it was a flagship COVID-19 policy that President Biden pursued for months.

Even though the court was one vote away from overturning the mandate, conservative Chief Justice Roberts, as well as Justice Kavanaugh, united with their liberal counterparts. They permitted the healthcare professional mandate to go into effect.

However, Biden’s inability to achieve his much-touted employer vaccination mandate was merely the latest setback he has experienced at the hands of the United States Supreme Court.

In August 2021, the Supreme Court voted 6-3 to invalidate President Biden’s eviction moratorium, with the court’s three liberal-leaning justices disagreeing.

The Biden administration already recognized they did not have the statutory right to extend the federal moratorium once it expired in July (2021). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) imposed a new suspension that was due to expire in October.

However, Biden might have overwhelmingly backed a decision by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to extend its eviction moratorium further, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in August.

Psaki also noted the Supreme Court ruled in June that the CDC could not confer such an expansion without congressional authorization.

According to the White House, Biden’s proposal for a new 30-day eviction ban focusing on areas with high infection rates was also rejected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Immigration Policies

At the end of that same month, the Supreme Court found the Biden government’s attempt to repeal the Trump administration’s “Remain in Mexico” policy was a breach of the law.

The “Remain in Mexico” policy, also known as the Migrant Protection Protocol (MPP), was implemented by the Trump administration in January 2019.

It involves returning migrants to Mexico to await asylum proceedings, rather than detaining them in the United States.

At the time, the Trump administration touted the strategy as a crucial component of its attempts to eliminate “catch-and-release” and stem the tide of illegal immigration.

Protesters believe the approach is cruel and puts migrants at risk of physical harm and exploitation in their new homes in Mexico.

Biden ran against the MPP and attempted to abolish it following his inauguration. Still, his efforts were thwarted by federal appellate courts after Texas and Missouri filed lawsuits against the administration.

In December, the Biden presidency asked the Supreme Court whether it was compelled to maintain the Trump administration’s stance. 

In the meantime, the administration intends to reintroduce the Trump-era policy, following their defeats in the lower courts in recent months.