OPINION | This article contains political commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer received bad news this week.
During the COVID-19 outbreak and hysteria, Whitmer used her “Emergency Powers” to mandate masks, lock down the state, shut businesses, and destroy the state’s economy.
Now the Michigan Legislature is taking matters into its own hands.
The Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945 essentially gives the Governor “superpowers” for the sake of “protect the citizens.” It states the following:
“The Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945, 1945 PA 302, as amended, MCL 10.31 et seq., provides that “[d]uring times of great public crisis, disaster, rioting, catastrophe, or similar public emergency within the state . . . the governor may proclaim a state of emergency and designate the area involved.” MCL 10.31(1). The state of emergency ceases “upon declaration by the governor that the emergency no longer exists.” MCL 10.31(2).”
This is found in Section 1 of article 5 of the Michigan Constitution of 1963.
However, now the House Republicans in Michigan have voted to approve the Unlock Michigan initiative.
This seeks to strip Governor Gretchen Whitmer of the overreaching emergency powers from 1945.
This is reportedly a “veto-proof vote” and the Senate legislature has officially revoked these emergency powers.
Here’s what the vote means via Michigan Rising Action:
“Today’s vote is a resounding victory for the people of Michigan, who over the past year, suffered needlessly under Governor Whitmer’s abuse of the 1945 Emergency Powers which she used to impose some of the most restrictive COVID rules in the nation,” said Eric Ventimiglia, executive director for Michigan Rising Action. Ventimiglia continued, “Thanks to the work of Republicans in the legislature and hundreds of thousands of Michiganders who took part in the Unlock Michigan initiative, Michigan will never again allow Whitmer or future governors to wield unilateral and unchecked power over the people of our state.”
The repeal of the 1945 Emergency Powers of the Governor Act turns the page on a dark period in Michigan’s history, which saw the Governor seize unprecedented power in the name of public health. After nearly a year of tireless work, every day Michigan citizens collected enough signatures in the “Unlock Michigan” initiative to force the veto proof vote in the legislature repealing the law.
The law has now been “removed from the books for good” because of a ballot petition that was started last year to keep this Governor and any future Governor in check.