CALIFORNIA—On November 2, Superior Court Judge Sarah H. Heckman issued a preliminary order for Governor Gavin Newsom to stop making executive orders that could contradict state laws and ruled one of his Executive Orders as an unconstitutional exercise of legislative power.
According to court documents, the Governor has issued three executive orders during the current State of Emergency regarding the November 2020 general election. He has also issued more than 50 different executive orders changing numerous California statues.
Heckman determined the California Emergency Services Act itself was constitutional, but does not give the governor power to amend or make new statues. The ruling will become final in 10 days if the governor’s team does not challenge it.
In June, the governor issued Executive Order N-67-20 directing county election officials to offer safer voting measures for citizens during the Coronavirus pandemic. It also specified how many polling places and ballot drop-off counties must have.
California Republican Assemblymen James Gallagher of Yuba City and Kevin Kiley of Rocklin, filed a lawsuit against the governor, contesting the use of his power.
The San Francisco News previously reported the governor signed Assembly Bill 860, which ensured every registered California voter with a mailing address would receive their ballot in the mail for the November election. Gallagher and Kiley both challenged the bill. They believed it should have been proposed by the legislature rather than implemented as an executive order.