SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s use of emergency powers to make far-reaching policies during the pandemic was upheld Wednesday by state appellate judges who rejected a lower court finding that the Democrat had done too much unilaterally.
Three judges from the 3rd District Court of Appeal in Sacramento ruled unanimously that the prior judge “erred in interpreting the Emergency Services Act to prohibit the Governor from issuing quasi-legislative orders in an emergency.”
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“We conclude the issuance of such orders did not constitute an unconstitutional delegation of legislative power,” they said in ruling on a lawsuit brought by Republican state legislators.
The court already had stayed the earlier ruling by Sutter County Superior Court Judge Sarah Heckman that Newsom unconstitutionally usurped the Legislature’s power.
Heckman more broadly issued an injunction — also temporarily halted by the appeals court — barring Newsom from issuing any orders under the California Emergency Services Act that amended state laws or legislative policy.
Newsom did so dozens of times during the pandemic in what amounted to one-man rule, Assemblymen James Gallagher and Kevin Kiley said.
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