NC Lt. Governor Discusses Lawsuit Challenging Governor’s COVID-19 Orders

WBT Newsroom
June 29, 2020 - 12:26 pm
 North Carolina Lt. Gov. Dan Forest

(AP Photo/Chuck Burton, File)

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North Carolina Lt. Governor Dan Forest held a news conference Monday in Raleigh, talking about his lawsuit against Governor Roy Cooper challenging COVID-19 executive orders issued by Cooper and the process by which they were implemented. Forest is running against Cooper in November’s gubernatorial election.

Forest says the lawsuit is not about the substance of Cooper’s orders, but what Forest says is the lack of authority under the Emergency Management Act to shut down the state without concurrence from the Council of State, of which Forest is a member along with Cooper and eight other statewide elected officials.

Forest is asking the court to invalidate what he describes as unlawful executive orders until Cooper receives the concurrence of a majority of the Council of State as required by law. Forest said, “In times of crisis the rule of law is more important than ever. We must do the right thing, in the right way. No one, governor or citizen, is above the rule of law.”

The Lt. Governor accuses Cooper not following the law, that one person is not allowed to shut down wide swaths of North Carolina’s economy indefinitely. Forest said, “The Governor chose to unilaterally move forward in defiance of the law and the Council of State. To date, he has not sought concurrence on six separate Executive Orders related to shutting down North Carolina.”

The Governor’s office has said that there are other powers granted in state law that allow Cooper to issue orders without concurrence from the council.

Listen to Joe Gillespie's report...

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