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ASU law professor says AG Brnovich's COVID-19 vaccine mandate challenge not legally valid

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich’s lawsuit against the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for federal employees is underway.

Brnovich filed the first legal action against the mandate and has now been joined by 10 other states.

He alleges the mandate is unconstitutional, and that the Occupational Health and Safety Administration has no authority to carry out the mandate. 

Arizona State University law professor Paul Bender says vaccines for federal employees fall under OSHA’s responsibilities.

“OSHA has jurisdiction to regulate businesses and interstate commerce, with regards to safety and similar things. And certainly, getting vaccinated or being vaccinated has a lot to do with safety,” said Bender.

Bender says compulsory vaccines have already been proven constitutional, so a major part of Brnovich’s challenge is not legally valid.

“They’re common, they’re valuable, they’re useful, they work, and there’s nothing unconstitutional about them,” said Bender.

A hearing has been scheduled for Wednesday on whether to temporarily block enforcement of the president’s orders.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story has been updated to correct Paul Bender's name.

Vaughan Jones is the weekend reporter for KJZZ, and a graduate of ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in sports journalism, with a minor in music. As a Phoenix native, Jones’s dream is to serve his community by covering important stories in the metropolitan area.He spent two years as music director at Blaze Radio, ASU’s student-run radio station. His passion for radio stems from joining Blaze his freshman year as a DJ.When he is not working, Jones can be found writing music with his band, playing video games with his friends, or watching his favorite Phoenix-area sports teams.