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Gov. Newsom has just claimed, without evidence, that our lawsuit against him threatens to “throw into chaos current efforts to combat the wildfires now burning across the State.” Such scare tactics are of course a favored authoritarian tool.

Yesterday, 33 fresh pages of briefing arrived from Newsom in his final volley before we face off in court. This will be a short post, as we now have 48 hours to write a Reply Brief.

Newsom’s threat about the fires is a cynical, thinly veiled attempt to strike a chord with a Northern California court at a time of untold suffering in the region. It shows the shamelessness with which the Governor has conducted this litigation, and his eagerness to grab at any pretext for power.

Firefighting, of course, is a clear executive function in response to a clear emergency. Our lawsuit has nothing to do with that: its aim is stop Newsom from using the charade of “emergency powers” for his own political purposes unrelated to any emergency.

We are demanding the restoration of constitutional government after seven months of its total collapse.

This is more needed than ever, as Newsom continues to literally erase the Constitution. His brief claims the State of Emergency lets him exercise “the full police power of the state,” but he leaves out the end of the sentence he’s quoting, which says these powers are confined by “the Constitution and laws of the State of California.”

Newsom even repeats his out-and-out proclamation that California is now an autocracy: “the Emergency Services Act centralizes the State’s powers in the hands of the Governor.”

Yet despite all of this, he has the temerity to say that his actions are “the opposite of a unilateral power grab.”

We plan to serve the Governor with a blistering Reply Brief on Wednesday. Then we’ll see him in court.

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Kevin Kiley is a Republican California Legislator fighting back against the Supermajority and Special Interests at the State Capitol and Washington D.C. Sign up for updates to be part of our growing movement, and join other Californians of patriotism, decency, and common sense who want nothing more than to save our state and our country.