Court Rules California Governor Gavin Newsom Violated Constitution With Pandemic Orders

We recently discussed how the Michigan Supreme Court ruled that Gov. Whitmer violated the state constitution — a decision repeatedly misrepresented by both Whitmer and major media figures. Now a California judge has ruled that California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s (D) executive pandemic powers on the election violate that state’s constitution. These rulings are notable in that the media has portrayed those opposing such powers as raising frivolous, if not laughable, challenges. There are other cases that support Newsom but this is the second judge to rule against him. The result of the order will not change the current election rules but it is indicative of a trend on pandemic orders.

Sutter County Superior Court Judge Sarah Heckman issued a preliminary order that stated that Newsom has supplanted the fundamental doctrine of the Separation of Powers:

“The CESA allows the Governor, during a state of emergency, to issue orders and regulations and to suspend certain statutes, but the plain and unambiguous language of CESA does not permit the Governor to amend statutes or make new statutes. The Governor does not have the power or authority to assume the Legislature’s role of creating legislative policy and enactments. Because Executive Order N-67-20 amended sections of the Elections Code it exceeds the Governor’s authority under CESA and renders Executive Order N-67-2O invalid.”

The specific change in the election law was later approved by the legislature so the ruling will not change

Newsom’s specific order involved requiring election officials to make hundreds of locations available for voters to cast ballots statewide. Lawmakers ended up approving the same mandate, so the order will not impact Election Day. However, these rulings are growing in number as courts adopt greater scrutiny of pandemic orders in various states.

25 thoughts on “Court Rules California Governor Gavin Newsom Violated Constitution With Pandemic Orders”

  1. If Biden and the Democrats seize total control of government this election cycle, the insanity presently on display in California will be the model of the rest of the country. They won’t be satisfied to have instituted crippling policies at the state level, they will break the legs from the federal level.

    Perhaps even more important is what we might call the unbroken-leg fallacy. This is the presumption, which underlies all sorts of state intervention, both macroeconomic and microeconomic, in the market system, that the participants in markets are perfectly capable of acting more productively but, owing to various “market failures,” are not doing so on their own and require state action to repair the situation. The fallacy is that this reasoning completely ignores the countless ways in which the state’s own intrusions and engagements in the economic system in effect “break the legs” of private-sector actors by distorting prices (including interest rates), penalizing productive actions, and subsidizing destructive actions. Having invaded the economic order like the proverbial bull in a China shop, the state’s kingpins, functionaries, and intellectual bootlickers then have the chutzpah to blame “market failures” for the wreckage they themselves have created — an ever-changing hodgepodge of bad incentives, misdirected state efforts, and ominous fears about further unsettling state actions to come.

  2. The once Great State of California burns down and General Secretary “Goofy Gavin” New-Com pays the Cal-Fire Chief Commissar $500K per year (I’ll bet he’s got a dacha in Tahoe too).

    California burns down because of extreme high winds as an Act of God and General Secretary “Goofy Gavin” New-Com and his absurdly overpaid, parasitic lapdog do-nothing Cal-Fire Chief Commissar blame PG&E and carve out $30 billion from shareholders.

    A DEMOCRAT runs against a DEMOCRAT for U.S. Senator (I guess I’ll vote for the democrat) and a foreign hyphenate wins.

    The once Great State of California.

    What’s wrong with this picture?

  3. 9th Amendment

    The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

  4. Sadly, tyrannical Democrat governors, like Newsom and Cuomo don’t care about court rulings. They’ll keep issuing their decrees and (sadly) oath-takers will (shamefully) keep enforcing the decrees until each unconstitutional order is challenged and defeated in court. It’s the Democrat way to operate outside the law until you’re caught and compelled to do the right thing.


    10th Amendment

    The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

  6. Much ado about nothing. This ruling was a technicality and was handled legislatively, but never let it be said that Turley passed up a chance to criticize a Democrat.


      GET OUT AND VOTE! wear your coat, use the bathroom beforehand, lines are long, hours long


      1. Didn’t have that option in my NJ town where we had the choice of mail or delivering the ballot at town hall. I chose the latter not trusting USPS. Estimates of undeliverable mail are 4.7% of volume Lost is a guess. but I frequently get neighbors mail. No matter how much money thrown at USPS it will not correct human error or make the dishonest honest.

  7. From “power to the people” to “power over the people”. They used to hide it.

  8. I wonder where this is going. I am noticing that courts are stepping in on elected officials over the Pandemic. I am not sure why the Governor ordering to make locations available due to the Pandemic is crossing a line unless that is fully within the Legislature’s role only. I also wonder if it is a warning shot to the Governor he is right at the proverbial line.

    1. Indeed, the Constitution *explicitly* vests the power to manage the time, place, and manner of voting (“chusing” in the original text) Federal offices in the Separate States’ legislatures. It likewise vests power to override their decisions to Congress. Governors, courts, and any entity not explicitly mandated, or have power delegated to it, by a state’s legislature is utterly illegitimate in any effort to alter the process in any way.

      While it may or may not be good idea to expand the number of polling places (a separate discussion entirely), it is patently prohibited for a governor to declare and institute it just because she wants to. It is likewise invalid for a sate-level court to limit or increase any manner of the process, unless the case before them challenges the adherence to (or lack of) state election law duly passed and in effect at the time of the election. and their decision produces such adherence. That, too, is the rightful role of Federal courts as well. They cannot wade into a dispute and determine that a state *must* do xyz, or that they *must not* do abc unless those orders force a state to comply with their own then-presiding rules.

      Such court interjections are the primary issues in Pennsylvania in particular, according to Republicans. Democrats tend to wave off these concerns in the interest of feelings or “fairness,” rather than see them as constitutional in nature, IMHO.

  9. Just as in China where the People’s Congress can be counted on to ratify every directive by Chairman Xi.

  10. I’m here in California and no one’s complaining about Newsom’s orders. This is the first I’ve heard that it’s a problem.

    1. I live on Kauai , North Shore, and California and own real estate investment properties in both States, had a law firm for over twenty years in California, still maintain my law license, have children and grandchildren in Alamo and Tahoe City who are property owners, business owners and medical doctors.
      I have heard more than a little about “Newsom’s Orders.”
      Restore the rule of law.
      Restore the Constitution.
      Restore the Republic.
      dennis hanna

    2. Anon: “. . . no one’s complaining.”

      Please tell me that was sarcasm. If not, then you’ve been living in a cave. There have been countless lockdown protests throughout the state (including at many beaches).

      1. He means no one he runs into in the restrooms at Will Rogers Park is complaining. Busy with other things.

  11. Gee tyrants using an exaggerated crisis to abuse power. Where have I read about this before or more accurately where haven’t I? About the time the damnable judges do their jobs.

  12. This is a governor who knew some people but not others. The “Newsom” family came over to America from Croatia.

  13. A pandemic can create a frying pan fight. One with a cast iron skillet has the advantage.

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