Federal District Court Permanently Ends Andrew Cuomo’s Restrictions on Houses of Worship

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We reported on the multiple times the arrogant New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has been ordered by courts to stop attacking houses of worship.  One setback for the governor came from a 3-0 ruling by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals that blocked the governor’s restrictions where he attacked worshipers’ capacity with a limit to 10 people in red zones with 25 in orange zones.

The governor’s first loss in court happened on June 26, 2020, when US District Judge Gary Sharpe ruled that Cuomo overstepped his authority by putting restrictions on people of faith while at the same time he allowed protests, all of which turned into nightly riots in New York City.

Then, on November 25, 2020, the US Supreme Court stepped in and set a temporary injunction against the state enforcing tyrannical restrictions on houses of worship.

It seemed like every time Cuomo lost in court he would comply for a couple of weeks to a month or so and then go right back to what he was doing before.   He’s such an arrogant person and he doesn’t care what courts tell him. He is the monarch in his own mind.

Well, this time a federal judge has permanently blocked Andrew Cuomo’s controversial restrictions on indoor worship gatherings that the US Supreme Court issued that temporary injunction I just mentioned.

On Tuesday, US District Judge Kiyo A. Matsumoto granted a  permanent injunction to block Cuomo’s COVID-19 guidelines as ordered upon all houses of worship that are listed in red and orange zones throughout New York.

It’s almost as if Cuomo was picking on religious people since he issued the order back in October and then extended the restrictions 5 times without any modifications for houses of worship.

Those restrictions were fought in court by religious organizations the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn and the Agudath Israel of America.  They argued that the restrictions clearly violated the First Amendment’s right to the free exercise of religion.

When the Supreme Court temporarily blocked the restrictions they argued that the rules were not “neutral” or “generally applicable” because “essential” businesses and some “non-essential” businesses were not hit by the same restrictions.  Only religious people can spread the virus in Cuomo’s delusions.

Judge Matsumoto wrote in her injunction, that the Supreme Court inferred that “fixed person capacity limits must satisfy ‘strict scrutiny.’”

The 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals remanded the Agudath Israel case back down to the lower court “with directions to grant a preliminary injunction against enforcement of Executive Order.”

On Jan. 19, the District Court granted the motion for a preliminary injunction.

Matsumoto said in the order that the state “agreed to an injunction against enforcement of the 25% and 33% capacity limits in red and orange zones,” and concluded that the state “has not presented additional evidence to supplement what was submitted in opposition to the Plaintiffs’ motion for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction.”

“Subsequently, Defendant’s counsel has represented in status conferences that before the end of February 2021 EO 202.68 will be amended to remove houses of worship,” the order explains.

Eric Rassbach, who serves as vice president and senior counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, the organization that represented Agudath Israel as part of the lawsuit, said it’s strange that a governor would ask the federal court to block his own guidelines.

“But that is exactly what Governor Cuomo asked for,” Rassbach said.

“The Governor is desperately trying to avoid testimony showing that his orders shutting down synagogues and churches weren’t based on public health but on politics. The court’s order is good news for the synagogues, churches, and other houses of worship of New York.”

Cuomo is such a fake, phony, fraud that even the New York Times reported that a number of state health officials resigned over disagreements with the governor’s handling of the pandemic.  According to the story, Cuomo pushed for health officials to match their health guidelines with his announcements.  Science anyone?

According to the Times, the state’s health department was never involved in the final decisions for policies on shutting down businesses in color-coded “microclusters.”  The Religious Liberty organization cited that the policy led to shutting down houses of worship all throughout Brooklyn.

“We welcome Governor Cuomo’s surrender, even if it took him way too long to figure out he was acting illegally,” Rassbach said. “And we hope he learned something along the way. If he writes another COVID book, maybe he can give it the title I Did It My Way—And Boy Was I Wrong!




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