Illinois Gov. Pritzker had no legal authority to lockdown businesses beyond April 9

Not that it matters to Pritzker and the herd of sheep that constitute the Illinois Legislature.

But here’s the deal:  The Illinois Emergency Management Agency Act empowers the governor, when the state is in a “public health emergency,” to issue “all lawful necessary orders, rules and regulations”  to protect  lives and property and protect the public’s “peace, health, and safety.”

But the law’s section 7 limits those emergency powers to 30 days from the date of his proclamation. Pritzker issued his proclamation  on March 9, which should have ended his emergency powers then.

Concludes Michael Ciesla, a longtime Illinois litigator and Northbrook attorney:

Governor Pritzker arguably had the authority to issue the initial executive orders to close businesses and order residents to stay at home.  The Governor also, arguably, had the authority to extend the orders but only through April 8 as his authority, and the executive orders, expired on that date. (Disclosure: Ciesla is a relative.)

So, what is to be done?

Illinois Atty. Gen. Kwame Raoul. Does anyone want to bet that he'll enforce the law?

Illinois Atty. Gen. Kwame Raoul. Does anyone want to bet that he’ll enforce the law?

The responsibility for enforcing the state law is Illinois Attorney General What’s His Name? You know, the guy Illinois voters put their trust in to be the state’s independent law enforcement official.

Yes, that’d be Kwame Raoul, just one of the lesser cogs in the Democratic Party’s machine that runs the state–into the ground.

Ciesla says that Raoul’s obligation is to challenge Pritzker’s “breach of law” by asking a court for a  “writ of mandamus terminating all COVID-19 executive orders as of April 8, 2020.”

Ha. And ha.  I’m taking bets that he’ll sit on his duff. 

Failing that, a private citizen could challenge the governor’s illegal action, as long as that citizen has legal standing. Considering the disruption and costs of the shutdown, such a person wouldn’t be hard to find.

But, considering the costs and delays built into the legal system, that might not work either. Is there a judge anywhere in Illinois who would even issue a temporary restraining order to consider the issue on an emergency basis?

The other recourse would be for the Legislature to extend that power, which if this were to become an issue it probably would. In a heartbeat. An ex post facto law perhaps, but who cares?

So, once again, has the Democratic establishment screwed the people of Illinois? You bet it has. 

My historical novel: Madness: The War of 1812

Type your email address in the box and click the “create subscription” button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.


Leave a comment
  • Couldn't he just issue a new proclamation?

  • In reply to Gary Lucido:

    I would think so. Probably the simplest solution. Still would leave a legal tangle about the legality of past actions.

  • In reply to Gary Lucido:

    Yes, most attorneys agree with that. Nothing in Section 7 limits the governor to a single proclamation. Michael Ciesla, who apparently represents a number of Illinois businesses, disagrees. He may have the financial backing to get a judicial determination of who is correct.

Leave a comment