LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Peter J. Lucido on Thursday said he’s disappointed Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and her administration are ignoring the recent Michigan Supreme Court decision that the governor overstepped her authority by continuing to issue executive orders regarding COVID-19 without the approval of the Legislature.
“The Supreme Court stood up for our constitution, our co-equal form of government and the voice of the people by ruling the governor was wrong in making her unilateral actions and that she must work with the Legislature to address the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Lucido, R-Shelby Township. “Unfortunately, the governor is now ignoring the court’s message and using her departments to continue forcing her go-it-alone orders on our people. It’s very disappointing and a slap in the face to the court and the millions of Michigan residents who deserve a voice.”
On Monday, Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Director Robert Gordon issued an emergency order restricting gathering sizes, requiring face coverings in public spaces and placing limitations on bars and other venues.
The DHHS orders come after the Michigan Supreme Court on Friday ruled the 1945 Emergency Powers of the Governor Act, which Whitmer was using to declare emergencies and make executive orders without legislative input, is unconstitutional. The decision essentially wipes out the governor’s COVID-19 orders.
“For months, we’ve urged the governor to work with the Legislature to protect our state and its people,” Lucido said. “Even though she has consistently turned her back on us, we remain ready and willing to come together on important measures to support and protect Michigan families during this outbreak.”
Lucido said that while he opposes the administration’s ongoing unilateral actions in the wake of the Supreme Court’s ruling, local governments and individual businesses have the authority to take actions to protect the public and their workers.
“We are not out of the woods, and I strongly encourage people to follow safety procedures to protect themselves and others — including wearing masks, washing your hands and practicing social distancing,” Lucido said. “Private businesses have the right to take actions they see fit to protect their employees and their customers, so I also ask that people respect their rights.”