Arkansas judge dismisses lawsuit challenging mask mandate


LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — An Arkansas judge has dismissed a lawsuit by some Republican legislators seeking to invalidate a mask mandate and other restrictions imposed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Pulaski County Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen on Wednesday ruled that the directives issued by Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s administration are within the governor’s authority under state law and legislative rules.

The lawsuit filed by 18 GOP lawmakers argued the restrictions required legislative approval.

A state representative who led the lawsuit effort said he planned to appeal Griffen’s ruling. Arkansas was among a handful of states that didn’t issue a stay-at-home order.

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