Judge temporarily blocks new Kentucky law on COVID-19 rules

Coronavirus Watch Kentucky

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear takes off his facial mask before providing an update on the COVID-19 pandemic in the state during a media conference at the Kentucky state Capitol in Frankfort, Ky., on Thursday, Jan. 21, 2021. (Ryan C. Hermens/Lexington Herald-Leader via AP)

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky’s governor has won a quick court order to temporarily block a new law he says would dangerously weaken the state’s response to COVID-19. The order came hours after a court hearing in the case Wednesday.

The judge issued a restraining order requested by Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear. It comes in his dispute with Republican lawmakers over his executive powers to order coronavirus-related restrictions.

Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd said the law could create “chaos” and confusion about measures intended to combat the deadly disease.

He ordered that the law be delayed until he hears more arguments in the case.

(This story was originally published on February 3, 2021)

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