It hasn’t been a very good year for California Governor Gavin Newsom, and it’s only early February.
The former San Francisco mayor is reeling over public backlash to his dictatorial restrictions that have done little to manage the Golden State’s horrific COVID infection rate.
As if Newsom needed any more trouble, the nation’s highest court delivered a defeat to his efforts to forbid citizens from attending in-person, indoor religious worship services, a stinging rebuke that will only serve to further undermine his credibility with voters.
On Friday, the Supreme Court issued its ruling that lifted Newsom’s ban on religious services by a 6-3 majority with leftists Sonya Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, and Stephen Breyer in dissent.
BREAKING: SCOTUS rules on religious services in CA. I'm glad all governors will be required to use science, data, and consistency in their emergency declarations.#libertyisgreaterthanfear https://t.co/YePIZ7t3a6
— Brian W. Jones (@SenBrianJones) February 6, 2021
Via The Sacramento Bee, “U.S. Supreme Court rules against Newsom on indoor church services in California COVID-19 case”:
In a ruling with major implications for California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s efforts to enforce COVID-19 stay-at-home orders, the U.S. Supreme Court late Friday knocked down the state’s prohibition on indoor church services.
The court ruled 6-3 in favor of South Bay United Pentecostal Church, located in the San Diego area, which has been fighting in court for months for the right to hold indoor services, saying Newsom’s order violated the Constitution’s protection of the free exercise of religion.
Under California’s tiered protocols, indoor church services are prohibited in regions of the state in the purple tier, where the coronavirus is designated as “widespread.”
The ruling was only a partial victory for the church. The court said in the unsigned opinion that the state could limit attendance to 25% of capacity. The state also can prohibit singing and chanting during services, as some health experts believe they could more easily spread the coronavirus.
Still, the decision — which reversed a 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling two weeks ago — represents a setback for the governor at a time when COVID-19 deaths in California have topped 43,000.
Newsom was riding high and was hailed by the corrupt media for his Draconian measures until he was caught violating his own rules by partying at a fancy eatery with lobbyists while the little people were under a de facto state of house arrest.
The pictures of Newsom at the costly French Laundry spurred the backlash that now has him staring down the barrel at what could be a successful recall and given his plummeting approval ratings, his prospects are increasingly dim.
While the ruling wasn’t the definitive strike on Newsom’s war on religious freedom that some had hoped for, it was sufficient to undercut the governor’s authority and potentially opens the door for other challenges in states where worshippers have been crushed under the boot of tyrannical Democrats.