Lt. Gov. Forest to discuss suit challenging Gov. Cooper’s COVID-19 orders

North Carolina news

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Lt. Gov. Dan Forest is already challenging Roy Cooper in this fall’s gubernatorial election. Now he’s preparing to challenge Cooper in court over the governor’s executive orders responding to COVID-19.

Forest scheduled a Monday news conference to discuss a lawsuit he told Cooper last week he wanted to file.

RELATED: Full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak

The Republican says Cooper is failing to follow state law by issuing orders closing businesses and limiting movement without receiving formal support from members of the Council of State. Cooper’s most recent order included a statewide face-mask mandate.

Cooper’s office has said the governor has other powers granted in state law that let him issue the directives without the council’s “concurrence.” The council is composed of Cooper, Forest and eight other statewide elected officials.

Republican legislators have passed bills that would allow businesses Cooper has kept closed to reopen, like bars and gyms. Cooper has vetoed two of those bills so far.

You can watch Forest’s press conference here.

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