Several former service members are taking legal action against the U.S. government due to lost pay and benefits stemming from the military vaccine mandate implemented by the Biden administration. Attorney Dale Saran, along with attorneys Andy Meyer and Brandon Johnson, who successfully challenged the Anthrax vaccine in the past, are leading three separate lawsuits. They aim to consolidate these lawsuits into a class action on behalf of all service members either discharged or ordered to cease drilling, resulting in financial losses.
According to Saran, the compensation sought by these lawsuits amounts to billions of dollars in backpay. These legal actions have been filed in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, a specialized court that handles cases concerning illegal discharges.
Saran estimates that around 80,000 to 100,000 service members, including both active-duty personnel and reservists, were affected by the vaccine mandate. Among them, over 8,000 active-duty troops were discharged, while tens of thousands of reservists were instructed to stop drilling or placed on inactive status.
The legal challenge asserts that these individuals were removed from service without due process. There were no administrative separation boards, hearings, or federal recognition boards conducted. Saran highlighted the absence of any procedural fairness in these actions.
One of the former Coast Guard members pursuing damages is Zach Loesch, whom President Joe Biden had personally thanked for his efforts during Hurricane Ian. Loesch was facing discharge from the Coast Guard due to his stance on the vaccine at the time.
Apart from lost backpay, the lawsuits also aim to recover enlistment bonuses from affected service members. Saran explained that individuals who enlisted for specific terms and received bonuses faced a situation where they were compelled to take a vaccine they considered experimental, resulting in repercussions on their service obligations and bonuses.
Saran emphasized the urgency of the situation, drawing parallels to his previous experience challenging the Anthrax vaccine. He underscored the familiarity of the circumstances and expressed concern that the government seems to repeat mistakes from the past in mandating unlicensed vaccines.
These lawsuits, Bassen v. USA, No. 23-211C, Botello v. USA, No. 23-174C, and Harkins v. USA, No. 23-1238C, filed in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, mark an attempt by former service members to address the perceived injustices resulting from the military vaccine mandate.