The Center for American Liberty on Tuesday filed a lawsuit against Gov. David Ige for “depriving residents of Hawaii and those living on the mainland” of their constitutional right to travel, due process, and equal protection rights.

By mandating a 14-day quarantine for air arrivals, as Ige did in March, the governor “has flagrantly disregarded the United States Constitution with ten successive orders with seemingly no consideration of the Constitutional limits of his powers.”

That’s according to a press release from the center, a California-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit “committed to defending the civil rights of Americans.”

Governor David Ige adjusts his mask after announcing interisland flights reopening tomorrow. June 15, 2020
Governor David Ige, seen here adjusting his mask on Monday, is the target of two similar lawsuits over his emergency orders on travel. Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2020

The lawsuit was filed in conjunction with The Dhillon Law Group of San Francisco and Hawaii attorney James Hochberg.

The plaintiffs are a California couple that own a Maui condo, an Oahu resident and a Nevada resident with a house in Kailua and a farm in Hilo.

The attorneys argue that under Hawaii law Ige can only order the quarantine “of those known to have a disease or suspected to have it, not a blanket order effectively imprisoning all mainland Americans who arrive to the islands.”

The Center for American Liberty has recently challenged the governors of California, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey “for their over-reaching power grabs” during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Hawaii Office of Attorney General did not have immediate comment on the lawsuit, which can be viewed here.

This is the second legal challenge to Ige over his emergency orders. Last week residents from Kauai and the Big Island filed a similar lawsuit.

“You have a king who is both making the laws and enforcing them. … What’s to stop the governor from extending the emergency and the emergency proclamations?” Marc Victor, the plaintiffs’ attorney from The Attorneys for Freedom Law Firm, said.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Tuesday that Krishna Jayaram, special assistant to the attorney general, said the allegations are unfounded.

On Tuesday, Hawaii House Speaker Scott Saiki issued a statement in response to both lawsuits.

“Due to our population size, Hawaiʻi requires extra safeguards to protect our families and resources during this pandemic,” said Saiki. “These lawsuits were filed by mainland entities on behalf of Hawaiʻi and non-Hawaiʻi residents. People who do not want to live with aloha and respect for others risk the health and safety of everyone.”

Hawaii’s travel quarantine remains in place until July 31. The interisland quarantine ended Tuesday.

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