In the last few months, as many as 14 lawsuits have been filed at the District Court level from around the state against the Lujan Grisham administration in an attempt to recoup losses incurred by businesses and individuals from the Governor’s public health order restrictions. The plaintiffs, which include a range of businesses, are bringing the suit alleging that the shutdown and further business restrictions have resulted in significant financial losses. The Governor’s administration however, argues that since the emergency public health orders were intended to protect the health of the general public, and are relying on precedent, there is no grounds for compensation claims. To that end, the Governor’s Office and Attorney General Hector Balderas’ office have jointly requested that the state Supreme Court to decide the issue collectively.
This is just the latest court challenge for Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham regarding her handling of the pandemic and associated public health orders. In August the state Supreme Court upheld the Governor’s ability to levy fines against business in violation of the public health orders and her authority to ban indoor dining in the state. This time, however critics are saying that the Governor is seeking to push the issue into courts she feels will provide her with a more favorable resolution. “What they’re doing is saying, ‘We don’t trust some of these District Court judges to deliver the rulings we want,’” said former Libertarian attorney general candidate A. Blair Dunn. Click here for more information.