The Supreme Court has intervened to stop a lower court ruling that would have required the Navy to deploy special operations personnel who are still awaiting verdicts on their COVID-19 vaccine religious exemption claims.
According to CNN, the ruling means that those special operations personnel, who include more than two dozen Navy SEALS, will not be deployed or penalized while they continue to contest the order in court. Conservative Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Neil Gorsuch cast dissenting votes.
On behalf of himself and Justice Gorsuch, Justice Alito stated that he and Justice Gorsuch believed the Navy had a “compelling interest” in preventing Covid-19 infection from “impairing its ability to carry out its vital responsibilities,” but that the Navy’s “summary rejection” of religious exemption requests was “by no means the least restrictive means” for furthering its interests.
The challengers had been handled “shabbily” by the Navy, according to the dissidents, who had “volunteered to perform arduous and risky responsibilities to preserve our nation.”
Conservative Justice Brett Kavanaugh, on the other hand, concurred with the majority, saying there was “no justification” for using the “judicial authority in a manner that military leaders feel will harm the military of the United States in its defense of the American people.”
The case’s challengers, which include more than two dozen Navy SEALs, claim they are religiously opposed to the vaccination mandate and are seeking an exemption.
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A district court ruled against the Biden administration, and a federal appeals court declined to intervene, claiming that the administration had failed to show “overriding interests” justifying vaccination the plaintiffs despite their religious convictions.
A provision of the injunction that protected SEALs and other troops from reprimand or dismissal for not being vaccinated was not challenged by the government.
The government, on the other hand, asked the Supreme Court to overturn a provision of the order that required the Navy to assign and deploy 35 unvaccinated special operations soldiers while the appeals process was underway.
In court documents, Solicitor General Elizabeth Prelogar told the judges that the Navy had already been obliged to deploy one of the challengers to Hawaii for submarine service “against its military judgment.”
This isn’t the first time Justice Kavanaugh has let conservatives down. In January, Fox News commentator Tucker Carlson referred to him as a “cringing little lefty” following another case regarding vaccination regulations.
Carlson was enraged by Kavanaugh’s decision to join Chief Justice John Roberts and the three liberal justices on the Supreme Court in maintaining President Joe Biden’s vaccination requirement for healthcare institutions that receive federal Medicare and Medicaid payments.
Carlson jumped in when Harmeet Dhillon of the Center for American Liberties termed the verdict “unfortunate…given the huge scarcity of healthcare staff that we have right now in our hospitals.”
“Without Brett Kavanaugh’s assistance, I notice.” Carlson joked, “Cringing little lefty,” before adding that he wouldn’t let Dhillon respond to his comments before questioning if democracy still exists in the United States.
Other conservatives resorted to social media to voice their displeasure with the ostensibly “conservative” supreme court’s decision to uphold the healthcare worker mandate. “The Supreme Court correctly ruled that Joe Biden’s vaccination requirement imposed through OSHA was illegitimate and unconstitutional.”
Before taking a direct shot at President Biden, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) said on Twitter. “It was sad to see Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Brett Kavanaugh join the liberals on the Court to support a mandate that targets health care employees,” he continued.