By MADISON HIRNEISEN
THE CENTER SQUARE STAFF REPORTER
(The Center Square) — An effort by Republican legislators to bring an end to California’s state of emergency failed in both chambers of the state Legislature Thursday.
Republican lawmakers from both the Assembly and Senate held a press conference outside the Capitol to promote Assembly Concurrent Resolution 46 and Senate Concurrent Resolution 5, both of which propose an end to the existing COVID-19 state of emergency and eliminate Gov. Gavin Newsom’s emergency powers.
“We have believed for several months now that it is time to end the state of emergency,” Sen. Melissa Melendez, R-Lake Elsinore, said during Thursday’s press conference.
Sen. Melendez, who is the author of SCR 5, has repeatedly tried to get a vote on the resolution during every Senate floor session in recent weeks. On Thursday, she brought up the measure again during the Senate floor session, and it was shot down by a majority of lawmakers along party lines.
On the Assembly side, Assemblymember Kevin Kiley, R-Rocklin, attempted to bring ACR 46 up for a vote during the chamber’s floor session on Thursday.
Assemblymember Kiley, donning a mask with a photo of Gov. Gavin Newsom and Earvin “Magic” Johnson during the AFC Championship game, argued it is hypocritical to allow thousands of fans to gather for the Super Bowl on Sunday while California remains in a state of emergency.
“California is hosting the actual Super Bowl during a state of emergency,” Mr. Kiley said. “It is time to end the absurdity and let the people of California get back to their lives.”
Mr. Kiley’s request to bring the resolution to a vote was shot down by the Democratic supermajority on Thursday.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the governor’s office called the Republican lawmakers’ actions “failed political theater,” saying that they should focus on “what best serves their constituents.”
“Apparently, Asm. Kiley and Asm. Gallagher believe it would have been better to let Californians die and be turned away from care when hospitals reached capacity during the Omicron surge,” Erin Mellon, a spokesperson for the Governor’s Office, said in a statement Thursday.
Madison Hirneisen covers California for The Center Square.