Federal judge: Lawsuit against Brown ‘unlikely to succeed on merits’


Several businesses and a nonprofit argued Oregon's coronavirus response violated their due process rights and the Constitution

CLACKAMAS COUNTY, Ore. (KOIN) — A federal judge ruled a lawsuit against Gov. Kate Brown’s executive stay-at-home order is “unlikely to succeed on its merits.”

The lawsuit was filed last week on behalf of the Hood River-based nonprofit Open Our Oregon, Da Cielo LLC in Portland’s Pearl District, Why Not Bar & Grill in Yoncalla, Hood River Mixer Shop in Hood River and The Dalles, Under the Skin Tattoo & Piercing in Hood River, Kuebler’s Furniture in Salem, Quins Bar in Ontario, A Street Tavern in Vale, the Lotus House lingerie shop in Roseburg, and PDX Muscle gym in Beaverton. They claim the governor’s executive orders are “irrational, unreasonable” and violate their due process rights.

Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Michael J. McShane denied the group’s motion for emergency injunctive relief, writing in part, “The Supreme Court ‘has distinctly recognized the authority of a state to enact quarantine law and health law of every description.'”

Monday, Baker County Circuit Judge Matthew Shirtcliff weighed in on a similar case and tossed out the governor’s statewide coronavirus restrictions. Within hours, the Oregon Supreme Court halted Shirtcliff’s order pending review by the higher court.

The Oregon Supreme Court’s forthcoming consideration of the issue factored into McShane’s decision in the Open Our Oregon case. He wrote the governor’s executive orders are now “appropriately before the Oregon courts.”

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