Hearing date set for Lawsuit to end Walz’s Emergency Orders
| Governor’s Executive Orders Exceed Constitutional Authority, Delegation of Powers |
Minneapolis – Late May, a coalition of small businesses calling itself Free Minnesota and a group of legislators who make up the New House Republican Caucus filed suit to end Governor Walz’s executive orders related to his declared “peacetime emergency.” Judge Thomas Gilligan was assigned to the case.
Although the petitioners requested expedited review, the attorney general’s office argued for more time and Judge Gilligan granted it. A hearing on the merits of the case has been set for July 16th at 10:00 AM in the Ramsey County Courthouse.
The lawsuit contends that the governor’s executive orders violate Minnesota Constitution and the judicially established non-delegation doctrine, because the executive branch is not empowered to make laws.
“The statutes authorizing peacetime emergency executive orders are themselves unconstitutional,” said attorney for the coalition, Erick Kaardal. “Under the state constitution and appellate case law, pure legislative power cannot be delegated to or exercised by the executive branch.”
Coalition spokesman, Dan McGrath adds that there are problems with the governor’s orders even before considering the constitutional question. “The emergency powers statute does not even contain a provision for public health,” he said. This is being considered a natural disaster, but we think of disasters like tornadoes and wildfires as things with finite area of effect and duration. Claiming public health, the governor could assume dictatorial powers over all areas of the state in perpetuity. It’s inconceivable that the legislature intended to abdicate it’s authority in this way.”
If the lawsuit prevails, all of Governor Walz’s executive orders that claimed authority under the peacetime emergency statutes will be rendered null and void and the balance of power between the executive, legislative and judicial branches in state government will be restored.
Plaintiffs include the Free Minnesota Coalition, now representing over 40 small businesses, State Representatives Steve Drazkowski, Jeremy Munson, Cal Bahr and Tim Miller.