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DOJ Files Statement of Interest Challenging Illinois' Stay-at-Home Order

The Department of Justice (DOJ), for the first time in history, will be weighing in on state-level COVID-19 policies, unrelated to religious matters, as they gain the Trump administration’s support in the lawsuit against Illinois Gov. Pritzker’s protective measures. 

The DOJ vs. Pritzker 

The DOJ vs. Pritzker The DOJ filed a statement of interest in the case on Friday, saying that Pritzker’s measures exceed his office’s limits, adding that his limitations, which rely on the authority under the Illinois Emergency Management Agency Act, have been “significantly impairing in some instances their[citizens] ability to maintain their economic livelihoods.” 

The government is also taking Republican state Rep. Darren Bailey’s side in the case, with Bailey being the one who initially filed the suit earlier this month, with the argument that Pritzker’s order violates a 30-day limit on the governor’s emergency powers put in place by the state legislature. 

Pritzker removed the case to federal district court over responding to Baily’s summary judgment motion. Assistant Attorney General Eric Dreiband said that Gov. Pritzker owes it to Illinois’ citizens to let the courts “adjudicate the question of whether Illinois law authorizes orders he issued,” in response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

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