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A health care worker administers a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at the University of New Mexico's Gallup campus on March 23. Photo: Cate Dingley/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected, without comment, a bid to challenge New Mexico's vaccine mandate for workers in hospitals, nursing homes and prisons, among other settings.

Why it matters: The court has repeatedly denied bids to block states' vaccine mandates, including in New York and Maine.

Details: The New Mexico requirement, which includes medical and religious exemptions, took effect in August.

  • Two women, including a former nurse who was fired after refusing to get the vaccine, argued in their petition that the mandate violates their "constitutional rights to bodily integrity and to engage in one’s chosen profession."
  • Justice Neil Gorsuch, who handles appeals to the Supreme Court from New Mexico, denied the application to block the order.

Go deeper

Jan 15, 2022 - Health

Experts warn of more COVID-19 variants after Omicron

Three COVID-19 testing companies place testing locations outside Grand Central Terminal on Jan. 14 in New York City. Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images

Experts are warning that subsequent COVID-19 variants are likely to come after Omicron, AP reports.

Why it matters: The warnings come as there's no guarantee that subsequent variants "will cause milder illness or that existing vaccines will work against them," underscoring the need for widespread vaccination, AP writes.

Judge nixes Gulf of Mexico oil leases in climate-focused ruling

Tug boats prepare to tow the semi-submersible drilling platform Noble Danny Adkins through the Port Aransas Channel into the Gulf of Mexico on December 12, 2020 in Port Aransas, Texas. Photo: Tom Pennington/Getty Images

A federal judge on Thursday canceled the Biden administration's late 2021 sale of new oil-and-gas drilling leases in the Gulf of Mexico.

Why it matters: The ruling that the greenhouse gas emissions analysis by the Interior's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) was insufficient is a win for green groups that challenged the decision, as they seek to curb fossil fuel production.

45 million Americans under winter storm watches near New England

Computer model projection showing the winds moving around the powerful East Coast storm on Saturday Jan. 29, 2022. Credit: https://earth.nullschool.net

Nearly 45 million Americans are under winter weather alerts and warnings from North Carolina to northeastern Maine Thursday night, as a major winter storm threatens the region.

Why it matters: It is predicted to be the biggest blizzard since 2018 to strike the Northeast with more than 2 feet of snow possible in parts of eastern Massachusetts, according to the National Weather Service.