You can have that Fourth of July barbecue after all.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker, the media and politicians, ignoring a new court order ending the governor's Covid-19 regulations, act as if nothing has changed. As if you still must obey, obey, obey.
But according to this legal analysis by Northbrook attorney Michael Ciesla, "The Governor’s COVID-1no9 Executive Orders Do Not Exist. End of Story", Illinoisans no longer have to obey any of the orders. His analysis concludes:
Simply put, it means that as of this moment, all restrictions on citizens and businesses are lifted. Masks are no longer required, social distancing is not required, restaurants can open to 100% indoor capacity without social distancing and gatherings of over 50 people are legal.
The Court also declared that Pritzker had no Illinois constitutional authority to issue stay-at-home orders or close businesses.
Clay County (Illinois) Circuit Judge Michael McHaney ruled that state law does not permit Pritzker to extend his excessively strict orders for more than 30 days, and because that window closed April 8. The suit was filed by state Rep. Darren Bailey (R-Xenia).
Emily Bittner, Pritzker's spokesman, asserted that order is not final and has no immediate impact because it didn't include an injunction barring the State from enforcing the Governor’s phase four rules.
But, as Ciesla explains, no injunction is necessary to effectuate the ruling.
The case was brought as a chancery case. Plaintiffs in chancery cases seek remedies that are non-monetary such as injunctions or, in this case, a declaration of the legality of executive orders. The Court declared that all of the Governor’s executive orders regarding COVID-19 are void as of April 8, 2020. Such declaration is the final say of the Circuit Court of Illinois. No injunction is needed as the Order simply erased the COVID-19 executive orders. If a citizen or a business acts in defiance of the now void executive orders and law enforcement or a government agency seeks to punish such action, then it would be proper for the person or business would seek an injunction to bar enforcement of the executive orders.
In other words, Illinois has become just like Wisconsin, whose Supreme Court nullified one and all pandemic orders issued by its governor, Tony Evers.
Free at last.