While COVID-19 curfews and closures may be adopted with good intentions, these government efforts to stop the spread of COVID have often backfired. And sometimes, these efforts are even unlawful.
Earlier this week, a Pima County Superior Court judge ruled that the county’s 10 pm to 5 am curfew violates state law and cannot be enforced. The lawsuit—brought by a group of business owners and supported by an amicus brief from the Goldwater Institute—argued that the county’s order, forcing all people to stay out of public places during those hours, violates state law as well as the executive order issued by Governor Doug Ducey in May. As Goldwater Vice President for Litigation Timothy Sandefur told Tucson’s KGUN 9 this week, “The county does have authority to impose curfews in certain emergency situations there, but Arizona law only allows counties to impose emergency curfews to prevent violence or breaches of the peace, and it doesn’t allow curfews, in the case of a pandemic.”
And in Chicago, Mayor Lori Lightfoot recently did an about-face on the question of restaurant closures in the Windy City. Now, she’s calling on the state to reopen restaurants and bars “as quickly as possible.” Her reason? People are getting together anyway, and since the government can’t effectively regulate what happens behind closed doors, it’s safer to let them gather in the open.
Sandefur writes at In Defense of Liberty, “mandates and compulsory curfews increase the likelihood of confrontations between law enforcement and citizens—confrontations that can turn violent, or result in people being taken to jail, where their exposure to COVID-19 is probably higher.” And as the Chicago story shows, “curfews are more likely to encourage people to congregate in secret, in confined places where there is a greater risk of infection, rather than in relatively safer outdoor business places.”
Private actors are much better at dealing with and adjusting to the realities of COVID than are government central planners. And that’s why Goldwater is standing up to government overreach where it exists across the country.
The $739 billion Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 being pushed through the U.S. Senate to be passed by reconciliation (50 votes plus the Vice President) before the upcoming August recess is a threat to America’s economy and the well-being of all Americans. The article above makes clear that Senator Kyrsten Sinema is the one Democrat vote that America is looking at. She alone can stop this legislation. Please contact her at her office locations in Washington, D.C. and in Arizona by phone and letter. Click the red TAKE ACTION link below for Senator Sinema’s contact information.
Although Senator Mark Kelly is a do-as -Chuck Schumer- tells-you-to-do partisan shill, contacting him may be helpful given his significant vulnerability in the November general election. His contact information is also found at the TAKE ACTION link below. We suggest that copying him on your letter to Senator Sinema may possibly have some impact on his voting behavior. Calling his office is also important – the staffs do score the relative positions of constituents and this too may influence the voting behavior.