Calif. medical misinformation law blocked by Federal judge

A California law tried to clamp down on medical misinformation related to COVID-19 and sought to focus on “consensus.” The problem? A judge couldn’t find consensus.

Nearly three years after the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, laws aiming to tackle so-called medical misinformation are coming under assault in the courtroom.

The latest victim? California’s recently-adopted Assembly Bill 2098.


In the news: On Friday, U.S. District Judge William Shubb blocked Newsom’s newly signed California law, as he mentions that the wording is “unconstitutionally vague”.

  • Assembly Bill 2098 states that sharing any false information regarding COVID-19, including potential risks, how to avoid it, and even treatments and vaccine information as it should be considered “unprofessional conduct”.
  • Judge William Shubb found AB 2098 to be unconstitutional as it is in violation of the Due process Clause of the 14th Amendment in the U.S. Constitution due to the vague wording.
  • Seeing that COVID-19 has only been around and been studied for only a few years many scientists have come to numerous conclusions and there has not become one general consensus of how to handle such a virus yet.

What is being said: Judge Wiliam Shubb mentioned after his ruling that “Because the term ‘scientific consensus’ is so ill-defined, physician plaintiffs are unable to determine if their intended conduct contradicts the scientific consensus, and accordingly ‘what is prohibited by the law.”

  • Children’s Health Defense Legal Team Member Ray Flores shared why he believe the case was won stating “Our Verma declaration clearly points out the chronological flip flop of the media’s promoted and generally- accepted narrative. This document proves the ‘contemporary scientific consensus’ is vague and ever-changing, and may wind up being the most important document that influences the Judge. The incorporation of the Verma declaration distinguishes our case from the other three CA Federal AB2098 cases.”
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