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Michigan Supreme Court rules against governor again, ending Covid-19 executive orders

October 13, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

FILE - In a June 17, 2020, file photo provided by the Michigan Office of the Governor, Michigan's Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer addresses the state during a speech in Lansing, Mich. Whitmer has extended Michigan's coronavirus emergency through Sept. 4, enabling her to keep in place restrictions designed to curb COVID-19. The Democratic governor on Friday, Aug. 7, 2020, pointed to an uptick in cases. Since nearly two months ago, the seven-day statewide average is up six-fold, to about 700. (Michigan Office of the Governor via AP, File)

The Michigan Supreme Court on Monday denied Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's request to delay the effect of an opinion that ruled her executive orders on the coronavirus pandemic are unconstitutional.

(CNN)The Michigan Supreme Court on Monday denied Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's request to delay the effect of an opinion that ruled her executive orders on the coronavirus pandemic are unconstitutional.

Ten days ago, the court ruled Whitmer, a Democrat who is a former prosecutor and a first-term governor, had no authority to issue or renew executive orders relating to Covid-19 beyond April 30.

Whitmer filed a motion last Monday, saying more time was needed to "allow for an orderly transition during which some responsive measures can be placed under alternative executive authority and the Governor and Legislature can work to address many other pandemic-related matters that currently fall under executive orders. "

Whitmer had extended the state's coronavirus emergency declaration by executive order April 30 after the Republican-controlled Legislature advanced a bill that would not have renewed the original declaration.

Whitmer issued a statement earlier this month after the court ruled she had no authority to issue or renew the executive orders.

The district court had asked the justices "to resolve questions concerning the constitutional and legal authority of the Governor to issue executive orders over the past six months limiting public and private gatherings, closing and imposing restrictions upon certain businesses, and regulating a broad variety of other aspects of the day-to-day lives of our state's citizens in an effort to contain the spread of this contagious and sometimes deadly disease. "

It followed a lawsuit filed by three medical centers against Whitmer in federal court challenging her executive order that prohibited non-essential procedures during the pandemic.

It said the authorities of the order were not at issue in the the Supreme Court's decision.

Monday, the state Supreme Court also reversed a lower court's judgment in a lawsuit brought by the Legislature, saying "the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act is incompatible with the Constitution of our state, and therefore, executive orders issued under that act are of no continuing legal effect. "

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