Wisconsin Supreme Court agrees to hear challenge to mask mandate, 3 justices dissent move
MADISON, Wis. — The Wisconsin Supreme Court has agreed to hear oral arguments in a case challenging Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ authority to declare multiple public health emergencies during an ongoing pandemic.
Waukesha County resident Jeré Fabick, a policy advisor at Heartland Institute, asked the court to hear the case, saying Evers overreached his authority in issuing multiple orders instead of going through the legislature.
“Petitioner Fabick, like every other Wisconsin resident, is required to follow the mandates of Emergency Order No. 1 and any other orders issued pursuant the Governor’s executive orders,” his request to the court stated.
The court’s three liberal justices – Justices Rebecca Dallet, Ann Walsh Bradley and Jill Karofsky – dissented the move, arguing that there is already a challenge to the emergency declarations in Polk County.
“The lower courts should be permitted to carry on without unnecessary and premature interruptions,” Dallet wrote for the three.
They questioned the harm the person who brought the suit faces.
“The only ‘harm’ alleged by the petitioner is that the Governor spent time drafting, promoting, and enforcing an executive order,” Dallet wrote. “By accepting this petition absent even the bare minimum requirement that the petitioner allege some personal harm, this court flings open its doors to any and all taxpayers who are merely unhappy with any government official’s action.”
The Department of Justice, representing Evers in the case, responded to the suit in court last week and argued the law does not restrict the governor to only one response in an emergency.
The state supreme court is scheduled to hear the case at 9:45 a.m. on Nov. 16.