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COVID-19

NY Judge Strikes down Gov Hochul’s Mask Mandate as ‘Unconstitutional’

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Kathy Hochul

A big legal blow was handed to New York Governor Kathy Hochul’s mask mandate. On Monday, a New York State Supreme Court judge ruled it unconstitutional. Judge Thomas Rademaker ruled the governor and state health commissioner no longer had emergency powers, therefore did not have the authority to enact a mask mandate without the state legislature.

“There can be no question that every person in this State wishes, wants and prays that this era of COVID ends soon and they will surely do their part to see that is accomplished,” Rademaker wrote in his decision.

“However, enacting any laws to this end is entrusted solely to the State Legislature. While the intentions of Commissioner Bassett and Governor Hochul appear to be well aimed squarely at doing what they believe is right to protect the citizens of New York State, they must take their case to the State Legislature” he concluded.

Governor Hochul quickly responded to the ruling, vowing to appeal it:

“My responsibility as Governor is to protect New Yorkers throughout this public health crisis, and these measures help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and save lives,” Hochul said. “We strongly disagree with this ruling, and we are pursuing every option to reverse this immediately.”

National Review reports that the county executive celebrated the ruling in a tweet on Monday: “A NYS Supreme Court Judge has ruled that the Governor’s mask mandate is illegal. The Governor and State Education Department have NO authority to enforce this mandate without the approval of State lawmakers. This is a major win for students & parents.”

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COVID-19

Internal docs show Amazon censored books on vaccinations due to pressure from Biden White House

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Vaccine

Recently released internal Amazon emails reveal the company caved to pressure from the Biden White House to suppress available vaccine information.

Provided to the House Judiciary Committee, the emails light on the extent of the Biden White House’s influence over the retail giant regarding vaccine-related content. The emails disclose a concerning narrative of pressure from government officials to suppress information deemed unfavorable to their agenda.

Republican Representative Jim Jordan of Ohio took to Twitter to disclose the findings, stating that the emails reveal direct pressure from the White House on Amazon to censor books expressing views contrary to those endorsed by the administration. One email, albeit redacted, explicitly poses the question of whether the administration requested the removal of certain books, to which the answer was affirmative.

National Review highlights the successful efforts of the Biden administration in persuading Amazon to limit the visibility of titles skeptical of vaccine efficacy. White House senior adviser for Covid-19 response, Andrew Slavitt, expressed concerns about Amazon’s role in propagating what he termed as “misinformation” regarding vaccines. His emails illustrate a push for action to address what he perceived as a proliferation of dissenting views.

In response to Slavitt’s inquiries, Amazon initially hesitated to take overt action, fearing backlash from conservative media outlets. The company’s internal deliberations reflect a concern for public perception and the potential amplification of the issue if intervention were too conspicuous.

Despite initially refraining from manual intervention, Amazon eventually succumbed to pressure, engaging in discussions with White House officials. The company’s internal documents reveal deliberations on whether the administration sought outright book bans or alterations to search results. Amazon’s stance, as expressed in their meeting with the White House, emphasized the provision of diverse viewpoints and the distinction between online retail and social media platforms.

 

 

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