Lawsuit against Gov. Newsom’s use of executive power moving forward


SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — An oral argument has been scheduled for a lawsuit claiming that Gov. Gavin Newsom abused his power during the COVID-19 State of Emergency.

Two California assembly members will be present for the court date: James Gallagher (R-Yuba City) and Kevin Kiley (R-Rocklin).

“Governor Newsom has abused his emergency powers, has violated our constitution,” Assm. Kevin Kiley said. 

They hope to defend a court’s ruling late last year the governor abused his emergency powers in response to the pandemic.

“California has not been well-served by one-man rule. We are asking the court of appeals to affirm the superior’s court’s decision and protect our representative government from the abuses of this or any future Governor,” the assemblymembers said.

Back in November, a California Superior Court ruled against Newsom, saying he exceeded his powers when enacting changes to Elections Code for the Nov. 3, 2020 election.

“We are very confident that the law is on our side. The laws of the state of California, The constitution does not allow for an autocracy under any circumstances, certainly not for a year and running,” Kiley said. 

Abuse of power is one of the reasons supporters cite in the effort to Recall Governor Newsom. 

Elections officials say so far they’ve verified 1.2 million of the nearly 1.5 million signatures needed in order for the recall to qualify for the ballot.

“I think there’s a widespread sense of frustration not only with the mishandling of this state’s response to COVID-19 but to the extent of which the people of California and their elected representatives have been disenfranchised for a year and running now that the people of California essentially have no say in the monumental decisions that control the most basic facets of their lives,” Kiley said.

In a statement, a governor’s spokesman said Newsom “looks forward to defending the state’s emergency response to COVID-19 in the Court of Appeal, which has already stayed the Sutter County Superior Court’s erroneous ruling in this case.”

Here are the details of that executive order, which the court had ruled is invalid.

Now, the 3rd District Court of Appeal in Sacramento will hear the case on April 20.

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