Kavanaugh rejects Illinois GOP request to block rule banning large gatherings
Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh rejected an application on Saturday from the Illinois Republican Party challenging Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s executive order banning large political gatherings due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Illinois GOP filed a lawsuit in federal court in mid-June arguing that the state was treating political rallies differently than church services or Black Lives Matter demonstrations.
On Friday, the party sought an emergency injunction against the governor’s restrictions. They argue that the upcoming election makes their case urgent and time-sensitive.
“Applicants are political parties whose speech is just as much at the heart of the First Amendment as religious speakers and protestors,” the state GOP wrote in its application to the court. “Plaintiffs are Republican Party organizations that wish to exercise their First Amendment rights to speak about politics in the months leading up to the presidential election this coming November.”
Kavanaugh rejected their application without a comment.
The rejection keeps in place a ruling by U.S. District Judge Sara Ellis, an Obama nominee, who denied the party’s motion for an injunction because the “Plaintiffs’ likelihood of success on the merits is less than negligible and the balance of harms weighs heavily against Plaintiffs.”
“For now, the Northwest Side GOP Club will respect Justice Kavanaugh‘s denial of an emergency injunction,” Chairman Matt Podgorski, one of the plaintiffs in the case, told the Washington Examiner Saturday.
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