A Wake County Superior Court judge denied Lt. Governor Dan Forest’s request for a temporary restraining order preventing enforcement of Gov. Roy Cooper’s pandemic related “shutdown orders.”
Forest, who is challenging Cooper for the governor’s office this November’s election, wanted the court to prevent enforcement of the orders unless a majority of the council of state concurred with the orders.
Judge James Gale concluded Cooper was within his authority to make the executive orders to address the pandemic for the duration of the emergency declaration and that Forest was unlikely to succeed on the merits of his claims.
“Accordingly, the Court concludes that the Lieutenant Governor has not demonstrated that he is likely to succeed on the merits of his claim that the Governor has exceeded his statutory authority when issuing the Executive Orders without the concurrence of the Council fo State,” Gale wrote.
Forest sued Cooper last month, seeking to void six of the executive orders Cooper had issued since March.
A number of business owners in the state have also, so far, been unsuccessful in lawsuits to void the orders.
“Dan Forest’s lawsuit never had teeth and today’s ruling confirms that,” said Cooper for NC spokesperson Liz Doherty in a statement Tuesday. “It was never more than a desperate tactic to garner attention for his political campaign. His time would be better spent putting the health and safety of North Carolinians before his own political motivations.”
Read Tuesday’s court order in its entirety here.