Nassau County’s Blakeman to Newsmax: Gov. Hochul’s Mask Mandate Unconstitutional

Nassau County's Blakeman to Newsmax: Gov. Hochul's Mask Mandate Unconstitutional (Newsmax/"Rob Schmitt Tonight")

By Charlie McCarthy | Wednesday, 26 January 2022 10:03 AM

Nassau County executive Bruce Blakeman told Newsmax that he's confident a state appellate court will rule that New York Gov. Kathy Hochul's mask mandate is unconstitutional.

Appellate Division Justice Robert Miller on Tuesday granted New York's request to keep the masking rule in place while Hochul's administration pursues an appeal. The governor's order requires masks in schools, healthcare facilities, homeless shelters, jails, public transportation, and in any indoor public area where vaccination isn't required for entry.

Miller's ruling came a day after New York Supreme Court Judge Thomas Rademaker said that Hochul and state Health Commissioner Mary Bassett did not have authority to issue such a mandate without legislative approval.

"I think Judge Rademaker made a very sound decision," Blakeman told host Rob Schmitt on Tuesday night’s "Rob Schmitt Tonight."

"It was principle; it was on the law; and basically he ruled that Gov. Hochul’s mandate is unconstitutional. There's no basis at all in law with respect to giving the governor or the health commissioner the power to have a broad mandate.

"We believe that when the full appellate court hears this case, that they will all confirm Judge Rademaker's decision."

Immediately before the interview, Blakeman was shown a photo of Hochul visiting a school — six children with their faces covered by masks were standing before five maskless adults, including Hochul.

"Each individual school district and each individual parent will be able to have the option as to whether or not they feel it's necessary for their children to attend school with a mask," Blakeman, assuming the state's appeal will be denied, told Schmitt. "And that's the point — we've been talking about parental choice. That's been my theme.

"Parents are in the best position to make choices about their kids, and school districts are in the best positions to make choices about what happens in their schools."

But that led the discussion to the posibility of a specific school district requiring masks.

"I think, in reality, the parents will make their voices heard," Blakeman told Schmitt. "Most of the parents I've talked to, they want their kids to take off the masks. They want their kids to get back to normal. They want their kids to go to the senior prom, the Christmas pageant, football and basketball games and not have their kids go to school wearing masks.

"We're not in crisis right now. Nobody's being hospitalized in large numbers. Nobody's dying in large numbers. This is, as one doctor told me yesterday, a bad cold now. I think it's a control issue, and I think Gov. Hochul needs to listen to the people."

It was pointed out to Blakeman that the Los Angeles Unified School District has required students to wear noncloth masks.

"It's absolutely bizarre," he said. "We just had two years of the pandemic. We went through the worst time about April of this past year, and now we're at a situation where the omicron variant, while it is contagious, it's not lethal."

"Basically, Los Angeles now, after two years, is deciding that cloth masks or paper masks aren't effective anymore? What were they doing for the last two years? That's what doesn’t make sense.

"Nobody is following the science. They tell you to follow the science, and then they provide no clinical data, no metrics to support their position."

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