Arizona attorney general asks for restraining order to block federal vaccine mandate

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich (R) filed an amended lawsuit against the Biden administration Friday, seeking a temporary restraining order and nationwide preliminary injunction to block the White House's new vaccine requirements.

Brnovich was the first GOP official in the country to file a lawsuit against the mandates last month just after Biden announced them. His amended complaint adds new claims to address the rules in place for federal employees and contractors, as well as expected rules for private businesses.

Brnovich, who is running for Senate in 2022 against Democratic Sen. Mark KellyMark KellyJuan Williams: GOP infighting is a gift for Democrats Koch Industries buys solar power company from GOP Senate candidate Conservative group targeting Kelly, Hassan, Cortez Masto in multi-million-dollar ad blitz MORE, is one of many Republicans who have opposed the administration over vaccine rules in recent weeks, including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantisRon DeSantisMore voters would pick Trump over Biden if election were held today: poll 17 Democratic state AGs back challenge to Florida voting limits The Memo: Media obsess over Trump's past as he eyes comeback MORE, Texas Gov. Greg AbbottGreg AbbottDOJ sues over Texas's redistricting plan Sunday shows preview: Multiple states detect cases of the omicron variant Hillicon Valley —TSA to strengthen rail sector cybersecurity MORE and a host of congressional Republicans. 

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Brnovich accused the White House of abridging personal freedoms and of overreach. His lawsuit also alleges that the mandates violate individuals’ statutory right to refuse vaccines available under Emergency Use Authorizations (EUA) from the Food and Drug Administration, because he claims Pfizer's approved version of the vaccine is not being distributed.

The lawsuit's original complaint was focused on what he claimed was the difference in treatment of U.S. citizens and those caught crossing the border illegally, who are not required to accept a vaccine.

Currently, all federal employees and contractors must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Nov. 22, unless they are granted a specific exception due to a medical condition, disability or because of a sincerely held religious belief. 

There is no option for COVID-19 testing as an alternative. People who are granted exemptions will need regular testing, but details have yet to be released. 

President BidenJoe BidenMan sentenced to nearly four years for running scam Trump, Biden PACs Dole in final column: 'Too many of us have sacrificed too much' Meadows says Trump's blood oxygen level was dangerously low when he had COVID-19 MORE also announced a new rule to be issued through the Labor Department rule that will require companies with at least 100 employees to implement coronavirus vaccination or testing protocols for their workers. However, the rule has not yet been issued, so it can't be challenged in court.

Anticipating the rule, many companies have already put their own requirements into place.

Health experts have praised mandates as an effective way to get people vaccinated, and the White House has fully leaned into them as a way to turn the tide of the pandemic after initially steering clear of federal intervention.