Attorney General William Barr just dropped a bombshell. He issued an announcement about ‘constitutional suspension’ and people across the country are stunned. This is the end of the line.
“[T]he Constitution is not suspended in times of crisis,” said Barr, addressing the COVID-19 crisis. “We must therefore be vigilant to ensure its protections are preserved, at the same time that the public is protected.”
Barr, in a memo to U.S. attorneys nationwide, challenged them to “be on the lookout for state and local directives that could be violating the constitutional rights and civil liberties of individual citizens.”
In some states and cities, there have been particularly disconcerting attacks on religious freedom — such as action against “drive-in” church services, which pose zero threat to the community.
Also, recently, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio issued a public statement condemning “the Jewish community” and telling them to avoid meeting altogether or face possible “arrest.” It is a terribly dangerous precedent.
This is why Barr is acting now to warn states and localities about overstepping their boundaries when responding to COVID-19. If overreach occurs, “the Department of Justice may have an obligation” to take legal action.
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