Politics Kansas lawmakers revoke Democratic governor's mask mandate
Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb says legislature didn't pressure him to end mask mandate. But there's tension.
While Indiana' Gov. Eric Holcomb attributed his decision to data, some political pundits think Statehouse Republicans played a role in his choice.While the governor attributed his decision to data on the spread of the pandemic during his statewide address, it's clear Republican legislators have been pressuring him intensely, pushing for a number of pieces of legislation that would curb his emergency powers. Some have been bottled up, but others have advanced.
Kansas lawmakers voted to rescind Gov. Laura Kelly’s mask mandate within hours of the governor issuing the executive order.
“Public health mandates should be short-term, data-driven, and reserved only for pressing emergency situations. They should not be used to dictate Kansans’ daily lives year after year,”Ron Ryckman and Kansas Senate Majority Leader Dan Hawkins said in a statement on the decision. "If data is the real driver behind the Governor’s approach, then let’s rely on the numbers.”
The Kansas Legislative Coordinating Council met Thursday to review 13 executive orders issued by the governor, and lawmakers revoked the order in a 5-2 vote. The vote repealed the statewide mandate, but cities and localities are free to institute their own orders.
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On Thursday, Kansas recorded an average of 6of COVID-19 per 100,000 people, according to data provided by the Mayo Clinic. Speaking in opposition to the revocation, Senate Minority Leader Dinah Sykes acknowledged that Kansans are “all tired of the face mask mandate,” but she urged the council to keep the statewide mandate in place because removing it may send “the .”
The governor and the Republican supermajority in the Kansas legislature agreed to new emergency management laws in March that stem the power of the governor. Kelly’s executive orders are subject to revocation at any time by the legislature. If the legislature is out of session, the LCC has the power to revoke the orders. The bill revoked all of Kelly’s.
Wisconsin Supreme Court rules governor exceeded authority with mask mandate, emergency orders
The Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday that Gov. Tony Evers (D) exceeded his authority with some of his COVID-19 emergency orders, including instituting a statewide mask mandate.The state Supreme Court issued a 4-3 decision against two of Evers's executive orders issued last year that extended the public health emergency beyond its original 60-day limit.The majority opinion, written by Justice Brian Hagedorn, cited state law that requires the governor to receive legislative approval to lengthen any public health emergency, including the mask mandate.
The bill also stripped power from local health officials, and any mask mandates, gathering limits, or orders thator limit religious services must be approved by the local board of commissioners before they can be instituted. The legislation also moved control of school closures from the governor to local school boards.
States across the country have been ditching their mask mandates as more people receive COVID-19 vaccinations. Texas reached a new low inthree weeks after the mandate and restrictions on business operations were revoked. Alaska Gov. said “no thanks” to President Joe Biden’s request for states to continue their mask mandates.
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The president called Texas Gov. Greg“Neanderthal thinking” and warned decisions to relax virus restrictions at the state level were a “big mistake.”
Wisconsin Supreme Court strikes down governor's 'unlawful' mask mandate
The Wisconsin Supreme Court struck down Gov. Tony Evers’s statewide mask mandate on Wednesday, claiming multiple emergency orders to be "unlawful."In a 4-3 ruling, the court said Evers’s order did not meet the requirements of a Wisconsin statute governing the terms of an emergency declaration by the governor, adding that because the Wisconsin Legislature overturned a previous mask order Evers instituted, the current order remains unlawful.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that anyone agedwear a mask if they are in a public setting, traveling on public transportation, or if in close proximity to someone who isn’t in the same household.
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Lawmakers seek long-term limit on governors' emergency power .
As governors loosen long-lasting coronavirus restrictions, state lawmakers across the U.S. are taking actions to significantly limit the power they could wield in future emergencies. © Provided by Associated Press FILE - In this Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021 file photo, Gov. Chris Sununu is sworn in for his third term by Associate Justice Gary Hicks during his inauguration ceremony in the Executive Council Chamber at the State House in Concord, N.H.