There will be no expedited action by the Michigan State Supreme Court on the legislature's challenge to Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency powers and actions. A 4-3 decision to refuse the case by the Supreme Court is not a decision on the merits of the case. But the State’s top judges are saying the Republican Majority lawmakers in the State House and Senate failed to show a great potential of harm by first going through the State Court of Appeals. Justices Stephen Markman, David Viviano, and Brian Zahra, all nominated at GOP conventions, were ready to take the case. Justice Elizabeth Clement, an appointee of former GOP Governor Rick Snyder, sided with the three Democratic appointees, Chief Justice Bridge McCormack, and Justices Richard Bernstein, and Megan Cavanaugh.

It is noteworthy that the Justices are also failing to order an expedited process for the case before the State Court of Appeals. Justice Markman is clearly dismayed. In his dissenting comments, he suggests the four Justices voting against the request have severely diminished the relevance of the high court. Justice Markman characterizes the case as, “…"perhaps the most substantial dispute ever presented to this court."

Markman also writes, "In all likelihood, the consequence of our decision today will be to ensure that this court never issues a meaningful decision concerning the nature and required procedures of the emergency authority of this state."

No word yet if the State Court of Appeals will do anything fast with the case. At stake is the legislatures claim that the Governor is acting as a sole leader of the state and making weighty decisions about the lives of Michigan residents without supporting input and votes from the legislature. That, say legislative leaders, is not just unlawful, it’s unconstitutional.

Protesters at the Capital in Lansing

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