Justice Amy Coney Barrett rejects students’ request to block forced vaccine; ‘my body, my choice’ gone?

Former President Donald Trump’s three appointees to the U.S. Supreme Court have a spotty record in the eyes of many on the right and Justice Amy Coney Barrett added to the disappointment on Thursday.

In the Supreme Court’s first look at a Covid-19 vaccine mandate, Barrett summarily rejected an emergency request from eight students to block a mandate from Indiana University. The justice oversees fast-track petitions from Indiana and denied the request without comment. She could have referred the case to the full high court for consideration.

The college is requiring students to be vaccinated unless they are exempt for religious or medical reasons, in which case they must wear masks and get tested regularly.

The policy, announced in May, applies to faculty and staff as well as students, with roughly 90,000 students and 40,000 employees on seven campuses required to get vaccinated for the fall semester.

A three-judge 7th circuit appeals panel voted 3-0 against the students, who argued that they have “a constitutional right to bodily integrity, autonomy, and of medical treatment choice in the context of a vaccination mandate.”

The opinion was written by Judge Frank Easterbrook, a Ronald Reagan appointee. The other two appellate judges were appointed by Trump.

The panel cited a 1905 Supreme Court ruling that said states may require people to get vaccinated against smallpox, according to Bloomberg News. Saying the current case is “even easier,” Easterbrook noted that Indiana University allows religious and medical exemptions.

The judge further wrote that any student who doesn’t want to get the vaccine “may go elsewhere,” and that the plaintiffs “have ample educational opportunities.”

Barrett was widely cheered online, with many saying she did the right thing and that mandates should be required. Others claimed the case had little merit to begin with.

On the other hand, there were plenty of social media users who were disappointed in the decision, with a common theme being a reminder that the Covid vaccine has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration and is being administered through an emergency use authorization.

Here’s a sampling of some of those responses from Twitter:


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