Following a recent opinion written from the Department of Justice claiming that federal law permits mandating an emergency use vaccine, non-profit Informed Consent Action Network’s attorneys issued a response disputing the conclusion in this opinion.
On July 26, 2021, at the request of the White House, the DOJ’s Acting Assistant AG released an opinion claiming the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, Section 564 permits mandating an emergency use vaccine. Section 564 states that for all emergency use products, i.e. unlicensed medical products, individuals must be informed of “the option to accept or refuse administration of the product.”
ICAN counsel’s response explains why the DOJ’s conclusion that an unlicensed medical product can be mandated runs contrary to the text of Section 564, its statutory framework, the history surrounding its passage, and its consistent interpretation by the FDA, CDC, DCO, and other federal agencies.
It is also illogical for Congress to provide in Section 564 that individuals must be informed of “the option to accept or refuse administration of the product” but permit expelling an individual from school, employment, or the military if they refuse.
“The Department of Justice is supposed to blindly enforce the law, without political persuasion. This DOJ opinion written for the White House falls far short of this fundamental responsibility to the American people,” says Del Bigtree, founder of ICAN, Emmy Award winner and host of the online weekly investigative news program “The HighWire With Del Bigtree.”
“The long-standing principal that no individual should be coerced or unduly influenced to accept an unlicensed medical product should not be abandoned based on the political needs of the day,” Bigtree says. “Whatever short term gain the President and the DOJ believe will be achieved by casting aside this fundamental protection pales in comparison to the harm likely to result in the future, if not from this product, but from others, by permitting mandating people to receive unlicensed medical products.”
ICAN’s response requests that the DOJ officials that drafted the opinion reconsider their interpretation and guidance regarding Section 564 and revise it, and that the DOJ fulfill its duty by enforcing this provision which prohibits mandates of an EUA product, rather than casting this important right aside.
“We live in an unprecedented time, making it all the more important to hold tight to the principles that we have learned from history,” Bigtree says.