Another day, another judge has ruled against another Democrat governor. This time, “Circuit Judge Matthew B. Shirtcliff granted a preliminary injunction to 10 churches that had sued the governor.” Unfortunately, Gov. Kate Brown’s office “appealed to the state Supreme Court to keep her emergency orders in effect.”

Gov. Brown, another iron-fisted Democrat, issued a statement after appealing. The statement said “This will ensure we can continue to safeguard the health of all Oregonians, including frontline health care workers, those living in nursing homes, workers in agriculture and food processing plants, and Oregonians with underlying health conditions, while the legal process moves forward.”

In his opinion, Judge Shirtcliff struck a different position. Here’s what Judge Shirtcliff said:

The governor’s orders are not required for public safety when plaintiffs can continue to utilize social distancing and safety protocols at larger gatherings involving spiritual worship. Plaintiffs have shown that they will be harmed by deprivation of the constitutional right to freely exercise their religion. Other plaintiffs have also shown great economic harm to their businesses and their ability to seek livelihood.

First, Brown will lose the fight with churches. If churches utilize social distancing, then Gov. Brown, or any other iron-fisted Democrat governor for that matter, can’t prohibit the free practice of religion. Overcoming the Bill of Rights is the legal equivalent of fighting uphill with a weight tied to your waist.

The legal position on other restrictions is that they have to be the least intrusive restrictions that accomplish the government’s legitimate goal. If these store owners show that they’re following the same rules that big box stores are using, then this fight is finished.

This isn’t the only instance of a Democrat governor overreaching. J.B. Pritzker, Illinois’s iron-fisted Democrat governor, is attempting an end-run around the legislature. Pritzker “filed an emergency rule that would penalize owners of restaurants, bars, gyms, barbershops and other businesses for reopening before coronavirus restrictions are lifted.” That’s unconstitutional because governors don’t write laws. They enforce them. State Sen. Dan McConchie replied through Twitter:

This says it all:

This is a clear breach of the separation of powers. It is the role of the legislature to make the law, and the role of the Governor to enforce it. He has assumed both roles and shut out the legislative branch. It is beyond time for the Governor to stop ruling by fiat.

Sen. McConchie better file a lawsuit on this because a judge’s ruling will take this out of Pritzker’s hands.

UPDATE: The Oregon Supreme Court intervened in the case, essentially throwing out the Shirtcliff ruling. This is, in my opinion, proof of why they should’ve filed this in federal court. State courts can get packed with partisan political operatives, which appears to have happened here.

One Response to “Judgment day on Dem governors?”

  • eric z says:

    Gary, have you seen figures on which states have the most virus cases and/or virus deaths per 100,000 population? It is enlightening. Google it. Useful info about pandemic geographics is not getting the attention it deserves. Other than noting old folks being warehoused are croaking at an alarming rate, what are the demographics, reasonably and impartially presented?

    There is a dearth of info that way being made public. In part it is because of the failure to have testing worth a good goddamn.

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