Arizona Supreme Court strikes down bills that prevented mask mandates, vax passports

For those who’re sick and tired of the silly masking guidelines and the idea of having to prove one’s vaccination status in the state of Arizona, it appears as if the situation could soon worsen after the Arizona Supreme Court’s latest decision.

According to the Washington Examiner, the state’s high court issued a full opinion on a case from earlier this year regarding statewide bans on mask mandates and vaccine passports, writing in the opinion that the bans on both vaccine passports and mask mandates violate the state’s own constitution.

At issue is a set of four budget reconciliation bills, which included provision to ban schools in the state from enacting mask mandates. The bills also included language that would have prohibited businesses, schools, and other entities from enacting a COVID-19 vaccine passport system.

Because those provisions were not related to the state’s actual budget, the Arizona Supreme Court struck them down. The case brought to the state’s high court is called Arizona School Boards Association et al v. State.

The Arizona Supreme Court made clear in its opinion that the bills involved in the case that would have prevented mask mandates and vaccine passports didn’t adhere to the “single-subject rule,” where a bill is required to be in relation to one area of the law.

They also pointed out that as a result, the bills’ content didn’t align with the titles of the bills, which is a requirement in the state.

“Enacting wide varieties of legislation may be essential to achieving one purpose, but that is not the case here,” the state’s justices wrote.

They added: “The only identified purpose here, as reflected in the title, is the budget. But the contested sections do not relate to the budget at all; they are devoid of any reference or significance to budget procedure.”

The ruling certainly comes as a blow to efforts made by top Republicans in the state. Last year, Arizona Republicans were the first to take on President Joe Biden and his administration with regard to the federal vaccine mandate.