The Ramsey City Council voted Tuesday night to stop using city resources to enforce the statewide mask mandate.
The resolution adopted by the council orders that no city resources, “whether physical, financial, or otherwise,” may be used to enforce any of Gov. Tim Walz’s executive orders.
This includes the mask mandate and “any other orders that infringe on people’s constitutionally protected rights.”
The resolution, brought by Council Members Chelsee Howell and Ryan Heineman, justifies the decision based on the Constitution and declares that no state should be required to enforce a law that will “abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States.”
Jake Duesenberg, president of Action 4 Liberty, insisted that “the executive orders issued under Gov. Walz are in conflict with the constitutional protections.”
Ramsey’s new city resolution states, “Walz’s executive orders in response to the COVID-19 pandemic have broadly undermined the basic human rights of our neighbors, our families, and ourselves.”
Duesenberg said the following in a statement on the matter: “Our founders did not create a government to tell people how to live their lives; rather, it was designed to protect their life, liberty, and property.”
The vote of 4-3 to pass the resolution came with opposition from both the city attorney and the mayor.
“You can’t ignore [the executive order] because you disagree with it. It still has the full force of the law,” City attorney Joe Langel said.
Mayor Mark Kuzma also expressed his disapproval with the council’s vote, saying he is “disappointed in the council bringing this resolution” and is not convinced the council has the right or authority to not enforce the mask mandate.
Reacting to Langel’s comment, Duesenberg indicated that the “entire Minnesota legal system” apparently thinks “our system of government — where laws are passed only by the Legislature — has been suspended until Walz is willing to give up his self-declared powers.”
Council Member Howell told Action 4 Liberty that although opponents conclude it is “selfish” behavior to disobey the mask mandate, she believes “the greatest gift is to allow each individual to make a decision that they think is best for themselves.”