Senate Leaders Issue Statement on Supreme Court Ruling Against House Resolution 836

(HARRISBURG) – Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-25) and Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman (R-34) today strongly criticized the Pennsylanvia Supreme Court’s nullifying House Resolution 836, which was passed by the General Assembly with bi-partisan support. The Court issued their ruling today.

House Resolution 836, which was adopted by the Senate and House of Representatives on June 9, ended the executive order Wolf used to shut down employers. The executive order was originally issued on March 6, 2020, and amended and renewed on June 3.  When Governor Wolf refused to terminate the declaration in accordance with House Resolution 836, the matter was taken up by the Court.

“Today’s ruling by the Supreme Court fails to uphold the Constitutional balance of power between the three, co-equal branches of government,” Senator Scarnati said.  “We understand the need for a temporary suspension of civil liberties under dire circumstances – something we agreed needed to happen initially as we worked to flatten the curve. However, while we work to protect lives, we cannot continue to disregard the civil liberties of Pennsylvanians. Our government was established to be of the people, by the people and for the people. With this ruling the Court has elected not to uphold the foundation of our democracy.”

“This decision represents a titanic shift in power which we believe is wrong and not in the best interest of justice,” Senator Corman said. “The Court has essentially granted the Governor King status. As we approach the July 4th holiday when our Country celebrates the freedoms that our forefathers established and fought to uphold, the Court has returned an unchecked monarchy to Pennsylvania. The unilateral decisions made by the executive branch caused hardships for families and communities in every corner of the Commonwealth. Despite the challenges that can be seen across the state, the Governor repeatedly spurned attempts by the General Assembly to provide input through legislation.”

Scarnati and Corman said that the Court’s decision makes it all the more significant that the Legislature has already started the process to amend the Constitution in order to provide some balance to this unchecked power exerted and abused by Governor Wolf. 

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Kate Flessner (Senator Scarnati)      kflessner@pasen.gov

Jenn Kocher (Senator Corman)       jkocher@pasen.gov