Michigan Supreme Court: Whitmer’s Lockdown Restrictions Unconstitutional

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Michigan’s Supreme Court struck down a 1945 law that granted Michigan governors unlimited powers during a declared emergency.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has used the law to impose strict lockdown restrictions on businesses and schools, all in the name of slowing Covid19.

“That act is an unlawful delegation of legislative power to the executive branch in violation of the Michigan Constitution,” Justice Stephen Markman wrote for the majority. “Accordingly, the executive orders issued by the governor in response to the COVID-19 pandemic now lack any basis under Michigan law.”

Coincidentally, the Court’s decision was handed down on the same day more than 539,000 signatures were submitted in a bid to repeal the 1945 law.

Republicans in the state’s legislature had urged Whitmer to use a 1976 law instead. That law gives lawmakers in the state input on any emergency declarations after 28 days.

Whitmer called the 4-3 decision “deeply disappointing” but showed no signs of dialing back. Her emergency declaration will remain in place for 21 days, and then after that many of them will continue “under alternative sources” of law she said.

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