Illinois (ECWd) -
Sunday afternoon Illinois Governor Pritzker took to the podium for his daily press briefing and chastised the Legislature for inaction (see video below), “complete abdication of responsibility”, on a perceived need of an enforcement mechanism for those who do not comply with his edicts. This came after his attempt at circumventing the legislature with an emergency rule criminalizing those who violate his rules which we covered in this article.
Elected officials are required to take an oath of office. That oath is spelled out in the Illinois Constitution, Article VIII Section 3.
"I do solemnly swear (affirm) that I will support the Constitution of the United States, and the Constitution of the State of Illinois, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of .... to the best of my ability." (Source: Illinois Constitution.)
Article V, section 8, of the Illinois Constitution provides that “the Governor shall have the supreme executive power, and shall be responsible for the faithful execution of the laws.”
It is clear, Attorney General Lisa Madigan not only wrote an opinion which clearly puts Pritzker in check, but she also cited the Illinois Supreme Court as the authority in the Buettell V Walker case. In the Buetell case the high court clearly established that Executive Orders only apply to those in State Government.
While Pritzker accuses the legislature of a complete abdication of responsibility, it appears the more accurate position is the Governor has completely abdicated his responsibility to his oath of office and faithful execution of laws.
There is no need for further legislation with an enforcement mechanism because there is already an enforcement mechanism. Its called due process and we wrote about it on March 15th, 2020, when we recognized he was trying to exercise power never given. That article contained the very enforcement mechanism the legislature found proper. It turns out the one responsible for that mechanism was none other than former Senator Barack Obama.
When the Illinois Constitution outlines the Governor is responsible for the faithful execution of the laws, that would include case law. As in the one that clearly outlines Executive Orders only apply to those in state government.
Considering Governor Pritzker has continued to ignore established case law from the Illinois Supreme Court and is exercising power never given under the Constitution, where do the people turn for a mechanism to hold him accountable? The answer is the Courts, however, anyone who dares question the Governor is automatically labeled as being political, or grandstanding, or in the case of Judge McHaney in Clay County, having a political agenda.
Based on over a million readers this month and comments and conversations from all political spectrums, nothing about holding the Governor accountable is political. It is about the rule of law and how it is supposed to apply to everyone equally. Whether it be the business owner being threatened for providing for his family or the Governor refusing to recognize established law from the Illinois Supreme Court, our laws apply to all equally. By all indications, the Governor either has the worst legal advisers in the land or it is he who has a political agenda. What other reason can there be for ignoring our own high court?
Actions speak louder than words and the Governor's actions point to a complete disregard for the oath of office he swore to uphold.