By CASEY HARPER
THE CENTER SQUARE SENIOR REPORTER
(The Center Square) — The majority of Americans support congressional efforts to block President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandates for large businesses ahead of a U.S. Supreme Court hearing on that very issue, according to a new poll.
Convention of States Action, along with the Trafalgar Group, released the poll, which found that 51.1% of surveyed voters support a bill in Congress to stop President Biden’s vaccine mandates for large businesses. The poll reports that 40.6% of voters do not support the bill while 8.3% of voters are unsure.
The U.S. Senate passed a bipartisan measure in December to block President Biden’s mandate, which requires employers with at least 100 workers to ensure they are vaccinated or undergo weekly testing. Businesses that do not comply face hefty fines. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration would enforce the mandate.
Notably, 62.9% of surveyed Independent voters with an opinion on the question said they support the bill to block the mandates as well.
“In this poll we see that a good number of voters are not aware of the measure in Congress to block Biden’s vaccine mandate, but among those who are aware, big majorities support the effort, even a third of voters in Biden’s own party,” said Mark Meckler, president of Convention of States Action. “This is the defining issue of the 2022 election cycle.”
Surveys were conducted Dec. 17 through Dec. 21 of more than 1,000 likely 2022 voters.
The poll comes ahead of the Supreme Court’s oral arguments on a legal challenge to two of Biden’s vaccine mandates. Those arguments are scheduled to begin today.
Critics argue the vaccine mandates set a dangerous precedent.
“All Americans should know this: if this OSHA mandate goes into effect, it will not be the last time OSHA attempts to regulate private businesses in novel areas that might have once been unthinkable,” Gene Hamilton with the group America First said. “Vaccines today, what tomorrow? We are immensely proud to partner with (Texas Public Policy Foundation) and other organizations to continue this vital fight.”
The Biden administration has defended its mandates, arguing the danger of the virus warrants the federal government’s intervention.
“Especially as the U.S. faces the highly transmissible omicron variant, it is critical to protect workers with vaccination requirements and testing protocols that are urgently needed,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement. “At a critical moment for the nation’s health, the OSHA vaccination or testing rule ensures that employers are protecting their employees, and the CMS health care vaccination requirement ensures that providers are protecting their patients. We are confident in the legal authority for both policies, and DOJ will vigorously defend both at the Supreme Court.”
Casey Harper works at The Center Square’s Washington, D.C., bureau.