President Joe Biden and his legion of deep-state bureaucrats have threatened for months to impose a nationwide vaccine mandate.
Just last week, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) director Rochelle Walensky told Bret Baier that the administration will be "looking into" a mandate as soon as the vaccines receive full approval from the FDA.
Walensky tried to walk back her comments later that day, but the cat has been out of the bag for months. Everyone knows the little tyrants in Washington’s public health bureaucracy want to force all Americans to get the jab, and our president has neither the willingness nor the fortitude to stop them.
But even if this administration decides that a mandate is too politically risky, there are lots of ways that the federal government can impose a shadow mandate without issuing an official executive order — and some of those options have been used before.
First, Biden could threaten to withhold federal funds from public schools.
The federal government gives public schools $1,131 per student for K-12 education and $2,032 per student for postsecondary education, according to EducationData.org.
That’s an appreciably nice chunk of change for your local school district, and many schools wouldn’t be able to function without it.
What would happen if the Biden administration issued an order that pulled funding from all schools that didn’t require the vaccine for their teachers and students?
Those schools would issue a mandate within 24 hours.
It doesn’t matter that such a move would probably be struck down in court, as some argued when Trump threatened similar action over school reopenings.
Biden would simply have to make the threat, and the schools would fall in line.
We saw this in 2016 when Obama threatened to withhold federal funds for schools that refused to acquiesce to the left’s transgender ideology.
The Obama administration simply issued a "directive," not an order, and we saw schools adopt the policy simply to avoid blame.
"I think thousands of superintendents are breathing a sigh of relief today," one institute president told Politico at the time.
"Many of them probably don’t want to take a position. … Thousands of school superintendents can now say they don’t want to put their federal funding at risk."
If Biden issues a similar "directive" to schools about their vaccine mandates, we can expect the same result.
The Biden administration could also impose OSHA work requirements.
Along with the Department of Education, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) impacts everyday Americans as much as any other federal agency.
To force employers to require their employees to be vaccinated, the Biden administration could work through OSHA to issue rules that make it easier for employees to sue their employer if they don’t impose a vaccine mandate.
OSHA has already taken steps in this direction.
In their updated COVID-19 "guidance" for all industries, OSHA reminds employees that "vaccination is the key in a multi-layered approach to protect workers."
The agency also instructs employers to grant paid time off for their employees to get vaccinated and reminds them that federal law requires employers to "provide a safe and healthy workplace free from recognized hazards likely to cause death or serious physical harm."
Biden’s OSHA hasn’t connected the dots quite yet but doing so would be simple.
Since COVID-19 has killed thousands of Americans and the vaccines have prevented COVID-19 deaths, they could make the claim that not requiring the vaccine for all employees amounts to an unsafe and unhealthy work environment.
When that happens, you can expect a flood of lawsuits against employers that continue to allow their employees to make their own vaccine decisions.
Biden can also lean on states to require the COVID-19 vaccine.
This one is the most obvious — and the most tyrannical.
Each year, the federal government doles out billions of dollars to the states in the form of grants, aid programs, and government contracting. These amounts range from $10,301 per resident in Virginia to $4,000 per resident in Connecticut.
If Biden wanted to force state governments to impose vaccine requirements, he could pick any or all of these federal programs and base eligibility on a state’s vaccine policies.
Maybe it’s a low-profile grant program that only matters to a state’s governor, or maybe it’s a well-known program like SNAP or Medicare.
Whatever funding stream he chooses, threatening to shut it down will bring state governments to the table.
Americans who pay attention know that this is one of the primary ways the federal government has expanded its power and destroyed state sovereignty.
Tax the American people into oblivion, and then return those dollars to the states with strings attached — forcing states to impose the policies they want. It’s that simple.
The courts may provide some protection against this kind of overreach, but we shouldn't hold our breath for that option.
Moreover, the Biden administration is starting to set the precedent of ignoring court rulings they don’t like.
So what can Americans do?
First, in the short term, Americans should demand their governors and state legislatures prepare to push back against and federal attempt at overreach with COVID-19 responses.
Only a handful of governors are already in the news for their pushback against the federal government.
That list needs to grow.
The states and the people have the right to self-governance. That right doesn’t disappear during a "public health emergency," and President Biden shouldn’t have the power to threaten it anymore.
And as a long-term solution, states need to reassert the constitutional authority they’ve been given — it’s the only truly effective solution against federal tyranny.
One of the primary options given states is an Article V Convention of States.
A Convention of States is called and controlled by the states and has the power to propose constitutional amendments. These amendments can restore the balance of power between the federal and state governments by limiting federal jurisdiction, eliminating many federal agencies, banning executive orders, and ending unfunded federal mandates.
This last year has revealed to many Americans the dangers of a powerful, out-of-control, central government, and it will only grow worse if citizens, and local governments, do not act.
To preserve our great nation for future generations we must all assert the liberties and protections the Founders granted to us; protections which gave us a much needed hedge against tyranny.
Mark Meckler is president of Convention of States. Read Mark Meckler's Reports — More Here.
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