The Iron Pig Smokehouse in Gaylord won the case against Governor Gretchen Whitmer. This is after an Otsego County judge ruled that the Iron Pig Smokehouse in Gaylord won’t have to pay a $5,000 fine or penalties for violating Gov. Whitmer’s COVID-19 shutdown.
Whitmer is one of the few that follows strict restrictions when it comes to Covid-19 in the country. The Governor repeatedly showed that she has no concern for civil liberties or the wellbeing of small businesses in her state. After COVID-19 struck Michigan in March of 2020, Whitmer shuttered much of the economy, claiming such actions would slow the virus’ spread and prevent hospital overcrowding. On Nov. 15, 2020, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Director Robert Gordon issued an “emergency order” that banned some gatherings and enacted an initial 15-day ban on indoor dining that extended to 75 days.
The Iron Pig Smokehouse in Gaylord had petitioned the court after the Gretchen Whitmer administration cited the restaurant for staying open and for the $5,000 fine that was levied against them. The restaurant had been suing the state for the cost of the fine and the loss of business after they were illegally closed for business. That part of the case is still to be determined.
Here’s an excerpt from The Detroit Eater Reports:
“The owner of Iron Pig Smokehouse in Northern Michigan is suing Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services for fines and loss of business he received after defying state orders during last fall’s indoor dining closures.
The Gaylord restaurateur’s lawsuit, filed in Otsego County District Court, seeks damages in excess of $25,000 and alleges that Whitmer lacked the legal authority to impose restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Owner Ian Murphy’s suit says the governor and the health department closed his barbecue business so “that it was unable to operate, unable to earn an income, and unable to function in any way.” The governor has three weeks to respond. The governor’s office has not immediately responded to a request for comment.
The Michigan Liquor Control Commission in December suspended the restaurant’s liquor license and tacked on a fine for violation of the ban on indoor dining and for not enforcing mask-wearing requirements. Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development took away the business’s food license and lobbed a fine as well.
Murphy’s lawsuit references a Michigan Supreme Court ruling last year that said a 1945 law giving the governor the power to issue a closure order for bars and restaurants was unconstitutional.”
Over the weekend, the judge ruled in favor of the owner of the Iron Pig Smokehouse, saying that Whitmer’s order to close down bars and restaurants in Michigan and the punitive measures she took against him were unconstitutional. The Iron Pig will not have to pay the $5,000 fine imposed by the state.
BREAKING: An Otsego County judge has ruled that Governor Whitmer and the MDHHS lacked the legal authority to impose COVID lockdown restrictions on a Michigan restaurant that allowed in-person dining.
Another win for freedom.
— Jenny Beth Martin (@jennybethm) January 16, 2022