Empower Wisconsin | May 27, 2020
By M.D. Kittle
MADISON — A downstate Illinois judge late last week took on the “insanity” of Gov. JB Pritzker’s stay-at-home orders that have locked down much of the state during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Chief Judge Michael McHaney’s ruling doesn’t undo Pritzker’s overreaching order, but it did provide some temporary relief for a tanning salon owner who sued the governor. During Friday’s hearing, McHaney said the business owner has had his “freedom and livelihood stripped away in violation of Illinois law every hour that passes.”
He described Pritzker’s orders as “royal decrees.”
“Illinois citizens are not being governed, they are being ruled. The last time I checked Illinois citizens are also Americans and Americans don’t get ruled. The last time a monarch tried to rule Americans, a shot was fired that was heard around the world,” McHaney said.
The judge’s pointed criticisms of the governor have been widely shared across social network pages, and celebrated by opponents of Pritzker’s broad use of power. McHaney has garnered plenty of praise from Wisconsin residents who have stood up against similar lockdowns from Pritzker’s fellow liberal governor, Tony Evers, and Evers’ power-grabbing public health chief.
“Since the inception of this insanity, the following regulations, rules or consequences have occurred: I won’t get COVID if I get an abortion, but I will get COVID if I get a colonoscopy. Selling pot is essential, but selling goods and services at a family owned business is not. Pot wasn’t even legal and pot dispensaries didn’t even exist in this state until five months ago and, in that five months, they have become essential, but a family-owned business in existence for five generations is not,” the judge said.
“A family of six can pile in their car and drive to Carlyle Lake without contracting COVID but, if they all get in the same boat, they will. We are told that kids rarely contract the virus and sunlight kills it, but summer youth programs, sports programs are cancelled. Four people can drive to the golf course and not get COVID but, if they play in a foursome, they will. If I go to Walmart, I won’t get COVID but, if I go to church, I will. Murderers are released from custody while small business owners are threatened with arrest if they have the audacity to attempt to feed their families.”
“These are just a few of examples of rules, regulations and consequences that are arbitrary, capricious, and completely devoid of anything even remotely approaching common sense,” McHaney said.
Read the full transcript of the judge’s comments here.