FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – The state attorney general has joined a lawsuit challenging the process Gov. Andy Beshear used to make some of his coronavirus-related orders.
The original lawsuit was brought by Scott County-based Evans Orchard and Cider Mill and Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles, who argue several of the executive orders violate the Kentucky Constitution or state laws requiring public input as part of providing due process.
“We’ve unfortunately seen a pattern during this pandemic where time after time, Kentuckians have had to resort to costly litigation to stop the Governors arbitrary and oppressive executive orders,” Attorney General Daniel Cameron said Friday in a press release announcing he was joining the lawsuit.
“And, time after time, those Kentuckians have prevailed in court. Virtually every court considering a constitutional challenge to one of Governor Beshear’s executive orders during this state of emergency has declared it unconstitutional and enjoined him from further enforcement,” Cameron added.
Beshear suggested politics were behind Cameron’s latest move, something Beshear has hinted at previously.
“Kentuckians elect an attorney general to protect them. This attorney general’s actions are focused on dismantling protections many other governors have taken to stop the spread of COVID-19 and save lives. Kentuckians deserve leaders in Frankfort who do not play politics during a global health pandemic and understand nearly 130,000 Americans – including nearly 600 Kentuckians – have lost their life to the virus. Fighting to rollback COVID-19 safety measures only means more lives will be lost,” Beshear said in response to Cameron’s move.
Earlier this week, a judge supported a day care center’s effort to ease restrictions, using some of the same arguments in the orchard’s lawsuit. The day care center case was filed in Boone County prior to the case filed this week in Scott County.
The Boone County ruling came Wednesday.
“This ruling is dangerous and would lessen and eliminate important protections that numerous states are using to stop the spread of the coronavirus. The ruling lessening day care protections comes on the same day that we learned 300 children in Texas day cares have contracted the virus. We will be filing the appropriate papers to move this case directly to the Court of Appeals and state Supreme Court. An attorney general should protect people, not put their lives in danger,” Beshear said in response to that case.
Some political pundits have mentioned Cameron might possibly run for governor in the future.