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The latest news about the novel coronavirus and COVID-19 in Montana.

Montana governor applauds pause on 'unenforceable' federal vaccine mandate

The novel coronavirus.
Centers For Disease Control and Prevention

Gov. Greg Gianforte on Tuesday applauded a federal court decision pausing the Biden administration’s rule mandating COVID-19 vaccines or testing for employers with 100 or more employees.

Gianforte reiterated that a state law banning employer vaccine mandates is still in place, although that’s also being challenged in court.

In an interview Monday, Gianforte called Biden’s rule “unenforceable” when asked whether he’ll encourage compliance if the rule is ultimately upheld by the court.

“We’re not seeing laws come out of Washington, we’re seeing edicts that did not go through a legislative process. So we think we’re on the right side of this.”

More than two dozen states, including Montana, are suing the federal government over the rule.

NPR reported Tuesday that the suit has officially landed in the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals based in Ohio that leans conservative.

The temporary block means federal workplace safety regulators cannot move forward with implementation of the mandate while a legal challenge plays out. In their pause of the rule, the three-judge panel wrote that it is “a one-size-fits-all sledgehammer that makes hardly any attempt to account for differences in workplaces.”

Shaylee covers state government and politics for Montana Public Radio. Please share tips, questions and concerns at 406-539-1677 or  
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