Democratic Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer is again the target of a lawsuit claiming political overreach from her COVID-19 virus orders and control. Friske Orchards Farm Market is the Plaintiff. The orchard is located in a rural setting about 10 miles south of Charlevoix. The orchard has been visited by state and local health and licensing department representatives. They’ve been threatening all kinds of legal and licensing action. They claim the orchard has failed to meet its obligations to the state by failing to force employees and customers to wear face masks. The Regional Health Department 12 days ago proclaimed the Orchard was an “imminent danger to the health and lives of the public”. The lawsuit reads, “Plaintiffs want to take all reasonable steps to ensure the safety of their employees and customers. But the current state of affairs is a legal minefield for well-intentioned businesses.”

The orchard is represented by Attorney David Kallman. He’s the attorney who successfully challenged the Governor’s virus orders on behalf of Owosso barber Karl Manke.

Karl Manke's Barber Shop-Google Street View
Karl Manke's Barber Shop-Google Street View

That was capped with a win in front of the Michigan Supreme Court protecting Manke from state enforcement. In comments aside from the text of the lawsuit, Kallman says, “This case is not about masks; it is about abuse of power." The orchard contends the Governor is overstepping her authority and forcing state departments, including the State Police to act like her Executive Orders automatically become state law. The orchard’s suit contends, “Defendant Whitmer is usurping the role and authority of the judicial branch with this brazen power grab. This is completely improper and unlawful.”
The lawsuit names Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer, two state agencies, and a Northern Michigan regional health department as Defendants.  The Republican-controlled State House and State Senate are waiting for their similar lawsuit against the Governor to be decided by a state court. Little doubt it will then advance to the Michigan State Supreme Court.

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