LATE UPDATE, 6pm: Judge Mike Liburdi has set a status conference for this coming Tuesday morning. (10/26 at 10:00am)
UPDATE, 3:45pm: BREAKING: USDOJ and AZAG Spar On Vaccine "Mandate" Impacts On "John Doe"
The legal filings are flying fast and furious in Arizona's case against the federal government's COVID vaccine "mandates", and John Doe is caught in the middle. His employer is either the U.S. government directly or a government contractor, and he claims a "medical exemption" from getting vaccinated.
The USDOJ pointed out that his concern about possibly getting fired is not sufficient to cause an emergency briefing and hearing on a preliminary injunction request filed this morning. Arizona replied and focused on the alleged potential harm to Arizona's economy and universities if the mandate goes into effect.
Local U.S. District Court Judge Mike Liburdi - who served as Governor Doug Ducey's general counsel before being nominated by then-President Donald Trump to the bench - earlier declined to expedite the schedule until knowing that all parties had been served. Now that the DOJ has filed, Liburdi is expected to make a decision (on expediting) shortly.
Original Article, 10/22, 7:45am: BREAKING: AZ AG Shifts Gears In Vaccination Mandate Suit Vs. US - Brings In "John Doe" Federal Employee (READ Filings)
Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich today morphs his anti-vaccine mandate case against the U.S. and is working with outside counsel and an anonymous federal employee. Brnovich is asking for an expedited hearing because the vaccination deadline for employees and contractors is coming up "within the next several days."
You will recall that Arizona rushed to be the first in the country to file suit after President Joe Biden announced coming requirements to have workers at private companies vaccinated against COVID. Although he had not taken action on that suit in the past five weeks, today's filings required an amended complaint, a motion for a preliminary injunction and a motion to hurry up.
The "John Doe" is a federal employee working in Arizona, and is being represented by outside counsel Jack Wilenchik. (Wilenchik and the AG's Office are co-filing today's pleadings.) John Doe has a medical exemption from being vaccinated, but he believes that the government will not honor it and his job is at stake.
The suit is in federal court, in front of U.S. District Court Judge Michael Liburdi.
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