Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch on Thursday lamented what he calls an intrusion into civil liberties by pandemic emergency decrees since the start of COVID-19 as the high court dismissed a suit on Title 42 as moot.
“Since March 2020, we may have experienced the greatest intrusions on civil liberties in the peacetime history of this country,” Gorsuch, one of six conservative-leaning Supreme Court justices, said in an opinion accompanying the court’s decision (pdf) published on Thursday.
Gorsuch wrote that emergency decrees ordering vaccine mandates and lockdowns issued by federal and state executive agencies resulted in an accumulation of power in those agencies and accompanied this loss of liberties during the pandemic.
“The concentration of power in the hands of so few may be efficient and sometimes popular. But it does not tend toward sound government,” the justice wrote. “However wise one person or his advisors may be, that is no substitute for the wisdom of the whole of the American people that can be tapped in the legislative process.”