Capitol Fax.com - Your Illinois News Radar » In a nutshell: JCAR’s HDems punted and the appellate court used that as an excuse to punt back
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In a nutshell: JCAR’s HDems punted and the appellate court used that as an excuse to punt back

Friday, Feb 18, 2022 - Posted by Rich Miller

* With one big caveat, this commenter pretty well summed things up in a single sentence

JCAR acted as it did entirely because they were waiting to see what the courts said. And the courts are now saying well, thanks to that, we don’t really need to rule at all

I would definitely not say “entirely.” Instead, I’d say “at least outwardly,” meaning, for public consumption. But, yeah, let’s take a look at their public comments.

* Earlier this week

Democratic state Rep. Mike Halpin of Rock Island said he was voting to block the revised rule from taking effect because “we’re currently in a situation where the (temporary restraining order) says this rule is not enforceable.”

“It’s possible, if not probable, that this might change on appeal, but for now as we sit here, for that reason, I’ll vote” to block the rule, Halpin said.

Two other Democrats who voted with Republicans, Chicago Reps. Curtis Tarver and Frances Ann Hurley, gave the same reasoning.

It takes 8 votes to suspend an emergency rule. The Republicans only have 6 members on that committee.

* And from last night’s appellate court ruling

On February 14, 2022, IDPH renewed the aforementioned September 17, 2021, emergency rules. However, on February 15, 2022, the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) objected to and suspended IDPH’s renewal. Thus, none of the rules found by the circuit court to be null and void are currently in effect. Accordingly, for the following reasons, we dismiss defendant’s appeal because the expiration of the emergency rules renders this appeal moot.

And we still have no word from the governor’s office.

       

32 Comments
  1. - Flyin' Elvis'-Utah Chapter - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:30 am:

    There are assistant managers at Burger King with more initiative and sense of duty than this whole lot.


  2. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:31 am:

    Never get in a punting contest with courts. It’s one of the first things they look at - “do we have to decide this?” If the answer is no, they often won’t. That’s how it should be. We don’t want them going off on tangents and deciding on hypotheticals or things not properly before them.


  3. - The Velvet Frog - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:31 am:

    Yeah, this seems less like a legislative/judicial decision and more like “one two three NOT IT!”


  4. - kidk - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:34 am:

    I find it amazing, that the Legislation complained forever that they weren’t being included in COVID rulings/laws/legislation. Then when they finally get a chance, they punt it to the courts. A little oversimplified but man someone behind the scenes is seething.


  5. - The Velvet Frog - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:36 am:

    Did the legislators complain they weren’t involved? Or mostly the GOP members? I would think the democrats would be happy to stay out of it.


  6. - Nick - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:37 am:

    Still agree with Justice White’s point that the challenge to the governor’s authority wasn’t a moot question but that’s neither here nor there I suppose. Messy situation regardless.

    I suppose now the question is does Pritzker attempt to reissue the orders, or simply throw in the towel?


  7. - Arsenal - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:38 am:

    ==I find it amazing, that the Legislation complained forever that they weren’t being included in COVID rulings/laws/legislation==

    They didn’t, really. Republicans did. But the majority was absolutely fine with it.

    And, y’know, understand what it was really all about- The Democratic Majority was by and large in agreement with Pritzker’s actions. The Republican minority was not. Every process argument is really about substance.


  8. - wonderings - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:39 am:

    Halpin is a lawyer. It is hard to believe he didn’t know voting to suspend the rule would moot the case or that court wouldn’t react to JCAR’s decision. The House Democrats on JCAR should have understood the law before taking the vote. If they didn’t that is on them.


  9. - Vaxed & Done - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:40 am:

    @Ron Burgundy’s comment is spot on.


  10. - Chicagonk - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:42 am:

    Obviously it’s crazy how emotionally charged and political masking has become. I do think with the decline in cases, Pritzker is in a spot where he can deescalate - the turnout for the VA election was very high in part because of angry parents. If Pritzker picks a fight here, he risks elevating further an issue that really only would drive turnout on the right.


  11. - Candy Dogood - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:42 am:

    ===gave the same reasoning.===

    “If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking” — George S. Patton


  12. - Arsenal - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:45 am:

    ==I do think with the decline in cases, Pritzker is in a spot where he can deescalate - the turnout for the VA election was very high in part because of angry parents==

    They weren’t really angry over masks, tho- look at how much trouble Youngkin is having now that he won’t allow them.

    Masks are popular among parents in IL. I think that that probably goes away by the fall- but then, Pritzker has made it clear that he expects mandates to go away by then, too.


  13. - Retired and loving it - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:49 am:

    THe Governor is going to continue to fight to get his way. One question I have is when the Feds pull the Emergency Pandemic status, will the Governor still keep the Emergency declaration (or whatever he has declared) here? He seems to like to rule by EO and JCAR.
    I think it is time to let people decide on their own, if they want to continue to wear the mask, good for them. If they don’t, good for them.


  14. - Arsenal - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:53 am:

    == He seems to like to rule by EO and JCAR.==

    “Rule by JCAR” is…very funny. JCAR is a mechanism for the legislature to exert more control on the executive. The Governor doesn’t really have a choice but to go through JCAR for administrative rules, and he- regardless of which Governor we’re talking about- would much prefer not to.

    ===I think it is time to let people decide on their own, if they want to continue to wear the mask, good for them. If they don’t, good for them. ==

    You’re going to get your way (and understand that Pritzker already announced an end to mask mandates outside of schools would take effect in 10 days), but we should probably understand that wearing a mask protects *others* from infection more than it protects the wearer. So it’s not really just a live and let live thing- not wearing a mask endangers others.


  15. - Vaxed & Done - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:55 am:

    Don’t know what to make of this idea that masks are popular with IL parents—maybe there’s weird preference falsification going on, or the poll is otherwise unsound? In any event this is certainly not consistent with my experience. Based on talking with my kids’ classmates’ parents I estimate the percentage of pro-mask parents to be *at most* 33%. And I live in Chicago.


  16. - Publius - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:55 am:

    @ Retired and loving it what do you do if you have a comprimised immune system? Those kids have the right to an education also. Tell them to say home? What if that was your child.


  17. - Chicagonk - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 10:59 am:

    @Arsenal - School districts can still require masks. I would imagine where mask mandates are popular, they will still be enforced.


  18. - Vaxed & Done - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:03 am:

    @ Publius, what did those parents and immunocompromised children do before COVID, which is not the first ever contagious disease?

    Also: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S016344532100548X


  19. - Arsenal - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:05 am:

    ==Don’t know what to make of this idea that masks are popular with IL parents—maybe there’s weird preference falsification going on, or the poll is otherwise unsound? ==

    Or maybe your personal experiences, while undeniably valid, aren’t consistent with what the broader statewide population thinks.

    ==Based on talking with my kids’ classmates’ parents I estimate the percentage of pro-mask parents to be *at most* 33%.==

    And the other parents in my life are close to 100% in favor of masks. Who’s right, who’s wrong? Nobody. We’re speaking to our experiences. But our experiences are extremely limited. That’s why the data helps.

    ==And I live in Chicago.==

    And I live downstate. Like I said- nearly 100% of the parents I know are pro-mask. But I don’t think they’re representative of the region I’m in, let alone the state as a whole. That’s where the data comes in.


  20. - The Velvet Frog - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:05 am:

    ==Don’t know what to make of this idea that masks are popular with IL parents==

    It’s simple. Other people don’t have the same personal experience that you have. The concept of anecdote shouldn’t be that hard.


  21. - The Velvet Frog - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:07 am:

    ==what did those parents and immunocompromised children do before COVID, which is not the first ever contagious disease?==

    In the case of polio, smallpox, measles, mumps, etc we have had vaccine mandates. You’re right, they would help again in this case.


  22. - Arsenal - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:07 am:

    ==School districts can still require masks.==

    That may be right, but the very people who brought this lawsuit disagree.

    ==I would imagine where mask mandates are popular, they will still be enforced. ==

    I tend to doubt it. School districts have to consider more than parents’ opinions in setting policy. Parents are always mad, lol.


  23. - Publius - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:11 am:

    @ Vaxed & Done they have the right to sue under the ADA. Schools had to provide access before for ramps and so on. I could see a school having to develop and online school for these kids or provide an alternate instruction environment. If that is too expensive and the voters don’t want to pay for it bring back masks or mandatory vaccines.


  24. - Big Dipper - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:36 am:

    ==we should probably understand that wearing a mask protects *others* from infection more than it protects the wearer. So it’s not really just a live and let live thing- not wearing a mask endangers others.==

    Two years into the pandemic people who don’t acknowledge this are either disingenuous or willfully ignorant.


  25. - Big Dipper - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:38 am:

    == And I live in Chicago.==

    Certain wards in Chicago are very conservative; that means nothing.


  26. - Arsenal - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:42 am:

    ==Two years into the pandemic people who don’t acknowledge this are either disingenuous or willfully ignorant. ==

    Agreed.

    And look: “wearing a mask protects others from germs you may not even know you have” was true before COVID, too. I would agree that there comes a point where you just have to accept risks. But we should be mindful that the risks exist, that it’s not a “live and let live” kind of thing.


  27. - Roadrager - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:49 am:

    ==I would imagine where mask mandates are popular, they will still be enforced.==

    The problem here is that the people who don’t have a problem with a mask mandates aren’t the ones hounding school district officials over email, leaving them threating voicemails, and performatively sobbing at school board meetings. That’s how a school district goes mask-optional despite not being party to the lawsuit, and the vast majority of complaints coming out of one school of more than a dozen in the district.

    It’s also how our kindergartner got his first cold in two years after three days of mask-optional schooling. Well, it’s a cold so far, according to the rapid test. We’ll see what the PCR has to say about it.


  28. - Roadrager - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 11:53 am:

    ==Certain wards in Chicago are very conservative; that means nothing.==

    Yesterday we had an alderman saying on the record that Black people who travel out of their neighborhood to shop deserve to be treated as suspicious by police. People who don’t follow Chicago politics regularly need to understand that the DINO is very real in town.


  29. - NonAFSCMEStateEmployeeFromChatham - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 12:07 pm:

    ==Halpin is a lawyer.==

    But is he a prosecutor? Like a certain infamous member of another past trio of obstructionist Democrats like to brag all the time.


  30. - Stig - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 12:25 pm:

    ==It’s also how our kindergartner got his first cold in two years after three days of mask-optional schooling. Well, it’s a cold so far, according to the rapid test. We’ll see what the PCR has to say about it.==

    Ditto. Our 5yr old started coughing 5 days after the masks went optional. She’s just now starting to get over it.

    I’m ready to move on. Not from masks, but from hearing people whine about masks.

    It’s time to start talking about required vaccination (The reason why I don’t fret about my daughter bringing home measles, mumps, polio, chickenpox, etc.)
    There also needs to be a serious conversation about improving ventilation in schools. That alone would significantly supplant the benefits that masks provided. Not to mention the benefits of improved air quality to learning.


  31. - New Englander - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 1:00 pm:

    As I said the other day, the Illinois Court has been desperate to avoid ruling on Covid cases. They will find any excuse they can.


  32. - illinifan - Friday, Feb 18, 22 @ 1:11 pm:

    Vaxed and Done “what did those parents do before”, when it was polio schools closed, kids did lessons by radio and when a vaccine was available in the mid 50s our parents got in line with all of us so we could be vaccinated. Before COVID schools individualized the intervention based on the student’s needs. The parents worked with the school to develop an individual health plan. In some instances the plan may result in a ban on nuts either in the school or classroom. It may result in teaching the child remotely. Some children with the health problem wore a mask to protect themselves. The school helped to minimize risk by requiring vaccinations for many infectious illnesses


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