A federal judge on Wednesday dismissed a lawsuit brought by Republican U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis alleging that Gov. Tim Walz’s COVID-19 executive orders restrict his ability to travel and effectively campaign.
Lewis, a former congressman running against DFL Sen. Tina Smith, said he will appeal the ruling by U.S. District Judge Donovan Frank.
Lewis filed the suit in May, arguing that the Democratic governor’s pandemic restrictions on travel and public gatherings violate his constitutional rights. It is one of 15 court challenges to Walz’s executive powers.
The governor’s temporary stay-at-home order restricting nonessential travel ended in May. The state now restricts indoor gatherings to 10 people and outdoor gatherings to 25, though at event spaces up to 250 people can get together, with a cap at 25% of the venue’s capacity.
Frank noted in his decision that Lewis did not sufficiently show that Walz had invaded his rights and said the Supreme Court has determined that a state can infringe on constitutional rights when facing a public health crisis.