Governor Gavin Newsom’s plan to use the Medical Board of California to punish doctors who have opinions that don’t align with the “consensus” concerning COVID has reportedly been blocked by a California judge who issued a preliminary injunction against the state law.
Assembly Bill 2098 was set to go into effect on Jan. 1, 2023. Under the guise of the legislation, the Medical Board of California and the Osteopathic Medical Board of California would have had the power to discipline physicians who “disseminate” information about COVID that contradicts the “contemporary scientific consensus,” according to Fox News.
Five California physicians took action in November against the heavy-handed Newsom medical edict. They filed a lawsuit against the governor’s administration, asserting that the law violates their First Amendment rights and constitutional right to due process.
One of the doctors standing up to Newsom is Aaron Kheriaty, MD. On Wednesday, he tweeted that a judge had granted their request for a preliminary injunction against AB2098. It temporarily halts the law from going into effect while the case makes its way through the courts.
Today’s judicial ruling against #AB2098 is the result of direct grassroots activism by doctors, lawyers and citizens who organized here on @Twitter & proved that our system of checks and balances works. We are nation of laws & no governor is above those laws. Leave doctors alone.
— Houman David Hemmati, MD, PhD (@houmanhemmati) January 26, 2023
“BREAKING: Judge just granted our request for a preliminary injunction against AB 2098–the gag order on physicians in CA–in our Hoeg v. Newsom lawsuit. This effectively halts the implementation of this terrible law while our case is being tried,” Kheriaty declared.
This is crazy. AB-2098 goes into effect as law in California. Doctors will lose their license to practice medicine if they warn against adverse effects of the shot. pic.twitter.com/1FmnwtXsi6
— Lil' Deplorable (@_posercomposer_) January 20, 2023
“The ruling bodes well for our case,” Kheriaty wrote. “It indicates that our arguments that this law is unconstitutional have strong pre-trial facial plausibility. Not to get ahead of ourselves, of course, or try to predict the final outcome of the case, but this is a very positive development.”
3/3 So grateful to be a part of this superb and courageous team of doctors and lawyers fighting for medical freedom and informed consent in CA. @TracyBethHoeg @AzadehKhatibi Ram Dureseti, Pete Masolewski @JeninYounesEsq @LauraPowellEsq
— Aaron Kheriaty, MD (@akheriaty) January 26, 2023
“One more detail here,” he noted. “The preliminary injunction ruling also establishes that we five physicians have standing to challenge the law. This is important because a similar challenge filed against AB2098 was dismissed based on a ruling that the plaintiffs lacked standing.”
4/ One more detail here: the preliminary injunction ruling also establishes that we five physicians have standing to challenge the law. This is important because a similar challenge filed against AB 2098 was dismissed based on a ruling that the plaintiffs lacked standing.
— Aaron Kheriaty, MD (@akheriaty) January 26, 2023
Kheriaty also linked to the court order in his thread.
The New Civil Liberties Alliance (NCLA) is representing the physicians in the lawsuit.
Jenin Younes, who is counsel for the NCLA, remarked in November that California’s new “misinformation” law is the result of many lawmakers embracing censorship more and more across the nation.
“That this shocking bill passed through the state legislature and was signed into law by Governor Newsom demonstrates that far too many Americans do not understand the First Amendment,” Younes commented.
They are muzzling us. #AB2098 muzzles doctors by threatening their medical license & livelihood if they don’t follow consensus opinion. In their fear & reactivity, the CA Legislature is creating a Ministry of Truth at @MedBoardOfCA to silence doctors who don't agree with them. pic.twitter.com/TYU6kVervK
— Azadeh Khatibi, MD, MS, MPH (@AzadehKhatibi) September 6, 2022
The premise of the suit is that the law violates the First Amendment rights of physicians because it hampers their ability to communicate with their patients during treatment.
“In safeguarding Americans’ rights to free speech and expression, the First Amendment applies not only to expression of majority opinions, but to minority views as well,” the complaint asserts.
The doctors also contend that “contemporary scientific consensus” is “undefined in the law and undefinable as a matter of logic.”
AB2098 update! 1-23-23. What a day for defending freedom! I and my fellow physicians defended free speech and ethical medicine proudly at our hearing in Sacramento today in our lawsuit against California for chilling the speech of doctors. #ab2098 pic.twitter.com/3cVKK8kmQq
— Azadeh Khatibi, MD, MS, MPH (@AzadehKhatibi) January 24, 2023
Dr. Tracy Hoeg, who is a plaintiff in the case, wrote in the lawsuit that she is “afraid of saying something to my patients that I know is consistent with the current scientific literature but may not yet be accepted by the California Medical Board.”
She went on to state that physicians must “feel free to speak truthfully with their patients if they wish to gain and maintain their trust.”
According to Fox News, “Hoeg has been the first, or senior, author of nine epidemiological analyses, six of which have been published in peer-reviewed journals on topics like the effectiveness of mask mandates and risk-benefit analysis of COVID-19 mRNA vaccines in children. She said the California law ‘puts physicians who are simply trying to give appropriate and individualized recommendations in a difficult position, particularly considering they may not know what the California Medical Board’s ‘consensus’ is at the moment or if it also evolves as our understanding evolves.'”
Should the law eventually take effect, California doctors are always welcome in Florida where constitutional rights are adhered to.
Doctors who are censored by Gavin Newsom, under California's tyrannical gag order, are welcome in Florida. https://t.co/NoO28Az9ly
— Christina Pushaw 🐊 🇺🇸 (@ChristinaPushaw) January 18, 2023
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