May 3, 2020 5:58 pm at 5:58 pm #1856333
A RC priest is suing the state to force the state to allow houses of worship that can have social distancing to conduct services.
That lawyer won a similar case in Illinois .May 3, 2020 6:28 pm at 6:28 pm #1856449
Explain how a) permitting some businesses to open for employees and customers but b) forbidding religions from opening their places of worship for ministers and congregants passes muster under the First Amendment to the Constitution.
Secondly, did New York even actually forbid places of worship from opening? Or did they just limit the number of people who can be there at the same time?May 3, 2020 7:14 pm at 7:14 pm #1856463
He will win. There is no reason to bring the case. Maybe a wise judge will deny standing.May 3, 2020 8:21 pm at 8:21 pm #1856480
nOmisorah, sorry its painfully obvious that your a teen, first graduate HS, graduate college, graduate law school pass the bar and then leave your commentsMay 3, 2020 9:25 pm at 9:25 pm #1856486
Disclaimer: I am not licensed in New Jersey (just CT, MA, NY, FL)
That said states enjoy Sovereign Immunity and generally one needs to get permission to sue a state from the state.
I haven’t read the filings, but question if the State of New Jersey has agreed to waive Sovereign Immunity and allow this lawsuitMay 3, 2020 9:27 pm at 9:27 pm #1856492
By the time a judge gets around to ruling on this (and similar) lawsuits, the case may be moot. Most state governors are operating under very broad emergency authority under their respective state laws to limit/suspend individual rights to protect public health and safety. Where they cross the line is when they cannot establish some reasoned basis for their decision-making or where it appears to be totally arbitrary with evidence of animus towards constitutionally protected rights. For example, a Virginia judge found the governor went too far by allowing outdoor gun ranges to stay open but closing an indoor gun range.. Conversely, several other federal and state judges have upheld limits on indoor religious services where there was provision for outdoor services with proper spacing. I would think De Blasoio’s selective enforcement is a bigger concern than closure rules that are applied uniformly across similarly situated religious/commercial activities.May 3, 2020 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm #1856514
CTL: Why would any State ever agree to waive sovereign immunity in any case against it (or for that matter against any city, county or municipality within the State, which effectively are all units of the State), if it could save itself from any lawsuits by not waiving it?
Additionally, regarding the OP here, is it not the case that when it comes to potential federal constitutional rights violations that a State cannot claim sovereign immunity? i.e. If a State outlawed the free press in the State, it couldn’t avoida lawsuit by refusing to waive immunity.May 3, 2020 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm #1856546
The Eleventh Amendment generally limits private actions brought against states in federal court. … A state may not be sued in federal court by its own citizen or a citizen of another state, unless the state consents to jurisdiction. However, where the claim relates to denial of a (federal) constitutional right, such claims often are heard in the federal appellate courts and SCOTUS (e.g. Heller decision striking down D.C. weapons law under Second Amendment, Oberefell (Bakers”) decision striking down Colorado civil rights law in the case of baker refusing to provide wedding cake for gay couple etc).May 3, 2020 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm #1856557
CTL: State is being sued in federal court so the state does not need to waive in this case. I assume you have pacer access if you practice in federal courts, the action is Robinson v Murphy if you want to read up on the case.
@godal the plaintiff is seeking a TRO and a preliminary injunction against this, those cases are fast tracked and they get a ruling in a matter of days for the most part.
PS the same lawyer sued the Governor of Illinois [Cassell v Pritzker] for same reasons and the governor removed religious services from banned activities rather then go to court.May 4, 2020 11:20 am at 11:20 am #1856677
CTL, see the 6th circuit decision in Kentucky, dismissing the distinction between “life-sustaining” and “soul-sustaining” activities. Also see the multiple decisions requiring states that have banned elective surgery to make an exception for abortion. The right to the free exercise of religion is at least as constitutionally important as the right to murder ones baby, and the same considerations apply: Ditto for closing gun shops; states cannot do that unless they allow some other method of purchasing guns, such as allowing a dealer to set up a table outside the store.
A state may not substantially burden a constitutional right without allowing an alternative method for it to be exercised. Nor may a state decide what is an adequate fulfillment of a religious obligation. Thus it is illegal for a state to ban tefillah betzibur altogether, but it may impose reasonable restrictions on it, i.e. restrictions that are capable of being obeyed and thus don’t constitute a de facto ban.May 4, 2020 2:03 pm at 2:03 pm #1856796
In an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus, every state in the United States has issued guidelines or orders limiting social interaction. But these rules don’t always apply evenly when it comes to in-person worship services and other religious gatherings.
In fact, only 10 states are preventing in-person religious gatherings in any form, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of recent state-level regulations. The list includes California, where a group of churches are suing Gov. Gavin Newsom in federal court over what they claim is a violation of their First Amendment right to free exercise of religion.
Perhaps with such litigation in mind, most other states have carved out exemptions for religious gatherings in their stay-at-home orders or other directives in an attempt to balance religious freedom concerns with safe social distancing practices. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to recommend that gatherings of more than 10 people be canceled, while in gatherings that do take place, individuals should remain at least 6 feet apart at all times.
In some cases, states have deemed religious worship “essential,” in the same category as food shopping and health care. These states include Florida, South Carolina and Tennessee, among others.
Roughly a third of states (15) are allowing religious gatherings to continue without any limit on their size.
Twenty-two states and the District of Columbia have specified in their orders that religious gatherings can take place, but only if they are limited to 10 people or fewer. This includes Rhode Island, where gatherings are limited to no more than five people. Two additional states, Connecticut and Oregon, limit religious gatherings to 50 and 25 people, respectively. Kentucky, meanwhile, is prohibiting “mass gatherings” – including faith-based ones – but does not specify how many people constitute a mass gathering.May 4, 2020 6:00 pm at 6:00 pm #1856905
States waive immunity for many reasons, often so an insurance company can be forced to pay.
The OP didn’t say this was filed in Federal court but said that in response to my first comment.May 4, 2020 6:01 pm at 6:01 pm #1856904
I do not practice in Federal Court. My practice is limited to Family Law, wills estates, Trusts and some contract/real estate work for the trust. I was admitted before the First Circuit about 35 years ago, but have not appeared in decades.
We specifically have never expanded into a general practice firm, very happy in our niche.May 4, 2020 6:03 pm at 6:03 pm #1856906
BASIC RULE OF AMERICAN LAW
a ruling by the Federal Courts in one circuit is NOT binding on other circuits. Only SCOTUS decisions bind all circuits.
New Jersey is not in the 6th and is not bound by that decision. They may take it under advisement and decide to follow it but are not bound by it.May 4, 2020 7:58 pm at 7:58 pm #1856944anonymous JewParticipant
CTLAWYER, You’re not correct on binding decisions. A recent disturbing trend is for a single district judge issuing national injunctions . Members of the Supreme Court gave expressed a dislike for the practice and have been overturning them on expedited appealsMay 4, 2020 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm #1857007
Anon, CTL is correct. Injunctions and precedents are two completely different things. National injunctions are issued when the defendant is the USA; the Sixth Circuit couldn’t have issued an injunction against New Jersey because it wasn’t a defendant in the case.
However, the law here is not in any serious dispute. The third circuit would have reached the same decision as the sixth, because there really isn’t any other decision to reach. And Police v Newark IS a third circuit decision, which is directly on point.May 5, 2020 8:39 am at 8:39 am #1857090
All right I checked off that little list for you. But in between forging my HS diploma and passing the bar, I noticed that we are all being affected by the shutdown that is a generalized grievance. Of course, there is Joseph’s argument. But the religious groups should be required to hold up their end of separation. That will never happen. And so America is destined to keep losing it’s religious leaders. And if he wins in court, we will be told it is a victory for religious freedoms.May 5, 2020 8:43 am at 8:43 am #1857119
Milhouse, I don’t you, where is the common denominator of Police v Newark and Robinson v MurphyMay 5, 2020 1:36 pm at 1:36 pm #1857261
Sorry, the OP got it WRONG.
The State of NJ is NOT being sued. Phil Murphy, in his official capacity as Governor is being sued. The suit seeks injunctive relief to an Executive Order.
YWN posted a news article about a Lakewood Rabbi joining the suit and posted the actual suit filed in US District Court.
All my previous comments about needing the state’s permission to sue the state were a waste of my time, since the state was not being sued.May 5, 2020 3:11 pm at 3:11 pm #1857319
CTL: What’s the legal distinction between suing a State in state court versus suing an officer of the State in his official capacity?May 5, 2020 5:10 pm at 5:10 pm #1857399May 5, 2020 5:11 pm at 5:11 pm #1857398
One is the legal entity for example your driving down Route 42 and hit a pothole and cracked a rim [ CTL with prior notice etc etc] you can sue the state or the governmental agency.
If the elected official does something in his capacity of office like banning the worship then you sue the individual acting in his capacity not the state or municipal corporation.
CTL. Disclamer I forgot I have lawyers in the room and was not explicit enough in the description of the defendant. LOLMay 5, 2020 7:03 pm at 7:03 pm #1857438Daya zoggerParticipant
We should all be makir tov,the person from Lakewood who joined the law suit.Otherwise bthis could ח”ו be a kitrug against us if goyim are more concerned with religious freedom bthan us.May 5, 2020 9:07 pm at 9:07 pm #1857493
See the DOJ “interested party” filing in the litigation brought in Virginia by a small church on Smith Island which had been issued a summons for violating the state’s guidelines limiting church gatherings to 10 individuals. In their case, they had 16 attendees in a building that seated over 200 and had taken other steps to follow CDC guidelines. While I’m a big supporter of the guidelines in general, some of their prescriptive rules make no sense, especially when you are dealing with constitutionally protected activities such as shooting ranges and religious services. I’m personally clueless as to why golf courses in many states were initially closed since I cannot think of a sport with greater social distancing when you walk the course (especially since I spend most of the time in the rough). However, golfing and getting a tattoo are not constitutionally protected. A bit more common sense would have made the rules go down a bit easier with most (but not all) those affected.May 6, 2020 9:34 am at 9:34 am #1857607charliehallParticipant
People are suing for the right to commit suicide. 🙁May 6, 2020 9:57 am at 9:57 am #1857635
Common, Police v Newark says that if the state has a rule, which is valid and it’s allowed to make, but it makes any exceptions to that rule, then it had better have a good reason why it can’t make the same exceptions for constitutionally protected activities such as religious exercise. Simply saying that it wants to keep the exceptions to a minimum, so it allows them only for what it regards as essential cases, is not good enough.
(Edited)May 6, 2020 10:22 am at 10:22 am #1857644
Our local municipal golf course was closed in March and has been reopened this week, It was not about social distancing of the players.
It was done because:
#1 it is within a municipal park, and all parks were closed and the entry gates locked. This closed the tennis, basketball courts, playgrounds and ball fields within that park as well.
#2 It was to protect the employees from exposure to Covid-19 carried by the golfers coming to play. There were shortages of masks and no requirement for people to wear masks in public. Since ordered by the Governor.
#3 The employees were put top work in more essential uses, such as sanitizing and deep cleaning, town hall, other government buildings and the schools, as well as DPW vehicles and equipment
#4 There was a shortage of PPE and cleaning materials and these were diverted to hospitals and first responders. Far more important than using them to sanitize each gold cart between foursomes.
#5 Keeping the golf course and parks closed help enforce stay at home orders. This is not a big city with people in high rise apartments or densely packed houses side by side. It is a small town with 1/2 or 1 acre zoning per house with everyone having private yards and gardens to enjoy. Our grandchildren, here since March 12 have been using our basketball and tennis court, riding bikes in our yard and drives, etc.
Mow that supplies and cleaning materials are more readily available, our golf course has reopened. Carts may be used, but only allow 2 in one cart if their Identification proves they live in same household. Golfers may only tee off if the previous golfers are already on the green. Tee times by prior reservation only, and no out of town players permitted.May 6, 2020 10:22 am at 10:22 am #1857646funnyboneParticipant
I agree with charliehall. In addition to suicide, people are suing for the right to be a rodef. It’s an embarrassment that a Rabbi joined the suit. I feel that Agudath should put out a letter that said Rabbi is speaking for himself and not the rest of the community.May 6, 2020 10:23 am at 10:23 am #1857654
Milhouse, I think using the police case as a precedence case is pretty weak, the defendant will argue that police is lack of reasonable accommodations as opposed to discretion of emergency powers,
Don’t get me wrong I think the Robinson v Murphy is on solid ground but the police case is not a precedence,
Just my hunch, the state will offer a compromise rather then risk a TROMay 6, 2020 11:41 am at 11:41 am #1857671
@charliehall, No, people are suing for governmental overreach, you can jump off an bridge anytime you desire and the bridge are pretty empty due to social distancing,May 6, 2020 3:52 pm at 3:52 pm #1857829Daya zoggerParticipant
The potential Chilul Hashem is allowing some incompetent bueracrat the power to decide how we practice our religion while some goyim are willing to fight for the right to decide that on their own.One can hold strongly that minyanim now are wrong and still should not want the govt making that decision.May 6, 2020 4:55 pm at 4:55 pm #1857853
One component of bringing a case is that it affects you in a unique way. I cannot sue against traffic laws because they apply to everyone. (This keeps the courts out of legislation and budgets.) The shutdown was applied (mostly) across the board. The government could admit that disallowing certaIin functions were in error, or argue that the interest of containing the virus is being applied equally to everyone. Personally, I think the Governors are being overloaded with getting medical supplies, and so on. We are better served the less they have to parse their directives to address personal freedoms. My freedoms could wait for better times.May 6, 2020 4:55 pm at 4:55 pm #1857854
Some practice their religion. Some are content with just having the right to practice.May 6, 2020 4:55 pm at 4:55 pm #1857871Doing my bestParticipant
The government should not be able to decide when a Certain part of a religion is important. It is up to the members of that religion to decide that. I do believe we should not be starting regular minyanim, but I also believe that the government should not be deciding that.May 6, 2020 9:15 pm at 9:15 pm #1857920
nOmesorah, After you earned your first pay check be sure lot let me know.May 6, 2020 9:15 pm at 9:15 pm #1857923
Funnybone, The day Augudah puts out a letter the Yaakov Horowitz speaks for himself and not the rest of the community is the day is the day that Augudah put out the letter saying that this rabbi speaks for himself.
I found it a bigger embarrassment when a pediatrician from Brooklyn went on a crazy rant.May 6, 2020 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm #1858012
funnybone, enough with the “rodef” nonsense. You have NO RIGHT to call someone a rodef just because they refuse to participate in some social experiment or follow the latest fad. A rodef is someone who knows he is infected, and nevertheless carries his infection to vulnerable people. Not someone who simply davens with a minyan without any reason to believe that he is harming anyone else by doing so.
Common, Police v Newark was a free exercise case, not a reasonable accommodation case.
n0m, you are wrong about standing. If you discover some defect in a traffic law you can and should sue over it, and the fact that you are not “uniquely” affected makes no difference. On the contrary, the fact that you are one of millions affected makes your case stronger. What keeps the courts out of legislation and budges is the separation of powers, and the fact that nobody is directly harmed by them.May 7, 2020 8:26 am at 8:26 am #1858167
I stand corrected I read the MoL on the filing, and one of the case laws was the Police Case, it was not the primary case law but one of several of the minor ones.
I also think n0m know what legal standing means because standing was never in contentionMay 7, 2020 10:53 am at 10:53 am #1858238
By the way, the same principle explains why New York streets are filled with unlicensed vendors of books, art, etc. The city has a law requiring a license of anyone selling anything in the street, and naturally that would apply to these dealers too. However following the Civil War it made one exception: for wounded veterans. They are allowed to sell anything in the street and need no license. That seems very reasonable and limited, but once the city makes this one exception it must make the same exception for vendors of all constitutionally protected goods, such as printed matter, videos, art, etc. This also explains the legality of the arba-minim markets that crop up on the streets in the week before Sukkos. The city could get rid of all of these if it were to revoke the veterans’ exception, but it won’t do that.May 7, 2020 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm #1858277
@Milhouse I was always wondering about the genuine Calvin Klein and Gucci handbags for sale for sale for $20 on the streets of Manhattan, I just found out is a freedom of speech thing. LOLMay 7, 2020 3:35 pm at 3:35 pm #1858385
No, those are illegal and when the cops come by they try to hide it. But those selling printed material, drawings, etc. are perfectly legal. So are the arba-minim dealers.May 7, 2020 4:19 pm at 4:19 pm #1858437
Rav Forschiemer of Lakewood started the rodef reference. He was talking about gatherings ending upon social media.May 7, 2020 4:19 pm at 4:19 pm #1858438
How about PayPal? I tried, but pay stub are not used anymore. You have not given an opinion about the ethics of bringing this case. I do not see a disagreement.May 7, 2020 4:20 pm at 4:20 pm #1858440
The government is deciding what amount of traveling and congregating is allowed. Religion in America today has nothing to say about religion. That is why the youth today have all the sociall justice that is unjust and anti-social.May 7, 2020 6:33 pm at 6:33 pm #1858457
Stop making absolute generalizations for things you are not the authority.
Many companies still issue paychecks with stubs, including my law firm.
I administer a trust that runs 14 McDonald’s (long tern non-Jewish client family) They issue more than 2,000 payroll payments every two weeks. Some employees chose direct deposit, some want checks. A checkstub is attached to the actual paychecks and those with direct deposit get a check marked non-negotiable without the micro-encoding but with a stub with full wages and tax deduction breakdown.May 7, 2020 7:39 pm at 7:39 pm #1858543
Huh? how did we morph from a freedom of religion or more precisely a government overreach issue to paycheck???, totally lost you on that.May 7, 2020 8:27 pm at 8:27 pm #1858578
I could not get you a pay stub, only a paypal email. I see you call this a government overreach. It was not Governor Murphy’s intention to interfere with any rights, he was trying to govern the crisis. I knew that governing by the government is highly unpopular these days. I did not know it was unconstitutional.May 8, 2020 7:29 am at 7:29 am #1858635
n0mesoah, The only part of the law where you need intent is in criminal law and this is a civil rights actionMay 8, 2020 7:29 am at 7:29 am #1858643charliehallParticipant
“people are suing for governmental overreach”
Coercive public health measures are not governmental overreach. See for example Jacobson v. Massachusetts in which the Supreme Court allows forced vaccinations, which is much more coercive than anything anyone has done in the coronavirus pandemic.
What distresses me more here is supposedly frum Jews whining about rights. Judaism is not about rights. Judaism is about obligations. And we have an obligation not to endanger others.May 8, 2020 11:57 am at 11:57 am #1858780
@charliehall, that is the gist of the whole case, the plaintiffs in the case Robinson and Knopfler are suing for what they see as governmental overreach, is it? it up a Judge to decide and it properly go to appeal and this is being fast tracked. this is what the Sixth Circuit Court Of Appeals wrote: ” The breadth of the ban on religious services, together with a haven for numerous secular exceptions, should give pause to anyone who prizes religious freedom,” the panel wrote,
In refence to your second comment, We are Jews and US citizens, we are afforded rights under the bill of rights and its amendments, Frum Jews are not whining they are exercising a right given in the US constitution. [if I remember right Charlie, you are a Canadian and therefore may not be familiar that US system].
In the Jacobson case it warned against arbitrary or oppressive regulations to be implemented, FYI this a 1905 case and during that time the courts were not very concerned about individual liberties, during that term the courts threw out laws allowing collective bargaining and limiting worker hours.
Judaism is about obligations, only a Rabbi know what obligation takes precedence over others. For that consult YOUR rov, and YOUR rov should pasken for YOU and YOU ONLY.
Some feel that if you are antibody positive and maintain social distance you can daven indoors, other feel the outdoor minyan is that way to go, others feel beyidus is the way to go, yet other feel that you need a secured a secure bunker in a island off the coast of New Zeeland.
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