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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - A federal judge in Portland has denied a temporary restraining order against Oregon Gov. Kate Brown’s COVID-19 restrictions around dine-in at restaurants.

The Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association had filed the lawsuit saying there was no evidence linking outbreaks of the virus to the restaurant industry in the state. Restaurant owners have said they felt the industry was being singled out.

In court Tuesday, lawyers argued that the restrictions were unfair and were causing harm not only to restaurant owners but employees in the industry. They echoed concerns of restaurant owners that Oregon Health Authority data does not link cases to the industry.

The governor’s lawyers argued that the restrictions were put in place after health officials looked at several studies that showed the virus does spread in restaurants but added, Oregon doesn’t have the data because contact tracers are so overwhelmed they don’t ask those type of questions.

In her decision, Judge Karin Immergut wrote that Gov. Brown’s executive order services a legitimate state interest. That interest is preventing the spread of COVID-19 during a sharp increase in cases and protecting Oregonians.

In her brief, Immergut wrote that the court understands the hardships restaurants and the industry are going through but there has to be a balance with those hardships and protecting the health of all Oregonians.

At the end of the decision Immergut wrote that further weighing in the government’s favor is that fact that the order is limited in duration and that restaurants have other ways to serve customers.

The Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association issues a statement Tuesday night, writing:

The Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association is disappointed we were not able to secure a temporary restraining order against the latest indoor and outdoor dining room freeze on our industry, which continues to impact thousands of operators and tens of thousands of industry employees.

We remain committed to working with Governor Kate Brown, her professional staff, and the Oregon Health Authority to find paths forward for Oregonian livelihoods which remain devastated by the realities of COVID-19.

We must now turn all of our attention to the importance of convening a special session of the Oregon Legislature in December, as well as the necessity of federal action. We must bridge the gap for Oregon’s small businesses and tens of thousands of workers who need relief until a widely available vaccine is available for our friends, our families, and our colleagues.

Copyright 2020 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

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(7) comments


Hold on, guys. Judge Immergut is a Trump appointee and though I'm not sure what her personal feelings might be on this case, she had the fortitude to rule based on the merits of the case under the law. Fair or unfair, harmful or not, the law is what it is until changed. Like it or not the question under the law was whether the Governor had the authority to do as she did. And, unfortunately for many she does. Let's not complain when the rule of law prevails. Otherwise we are no different than "them". :)


They should stay open and tell comrade Kate to shove it. If enough do it, there is nothing that she or her commie buddies can do about it.

Worst PDX Mayor Ever

"Immergut" translation means "Always Good." Well..not this time. Her logic is that restaurants and bars have "other ways to serve customers?" Are you joking? It's not lost on us that your first name is "Karen," btw.

This suit would need to go before the US Supreme Court to get any real justice. Oregon Supreme Court will back Gov. Gladys Kravitz. Same with the 9th Circuit. Nope, this one has to appealed all the way to the US Supreme Court, because this; "it's only temporary," is not true. This pattern is going to keeping repeating itself, as long as we have fools in office.


No, the court DOES NOT understand the hardship that families are going through. Maybe they should give up their salaries and go on unemployment and deal with that garbage system and wait for their checks or get denied like many have and then deal with that. Brownhead and the other liberals cant wait to get Biden bailout money.


Just another judge in Kate Browns pocket.


I looked at her history and really wanted to believe that as well. But she is probably one of the few unbiased judges left in this state. She was put in her position by Trump, and was nominated previously by Gordon Smith. Also, she worked under Ken Starr during the Clinton cover up.

While she was originally a Demo-Rat and got her Edu-ma-cation at Berkley, she switched to Independent in the 90's.

Her point was valid, but I think she also highlighted the fact that Brown is Skirting the laws. Just barely.. If other businesses that were forced to shut down (Gyms, Ice Rinks...etc.) actually filed a suit, she would've probably ruled in their favor since they were never given an alternative.


Government mandates, government lawyers, government judges all allowed to work and be paid, while the private sector suffers from their rules.

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