Responding to the rapidly spreading hysteria regarding the Wuhan Coronavirus, New Hampshire Dictator Chris Sununu ordered on Monday the mandatory closure of restaurant dining rooms. The decree will last until at least April 7th, though diners will still be allowed to offer drive-through and delivery options in the meantime. Sununu also announced a ban on any gathering of 50 or more people, effectively outlawing most religious gatherings.
Multiple states have already implemented similar lockdowns, and other states are likely to follow suit over the coming days or weeks. Lockdown policies have become more common in cities like the Bay Area of California, which has initiated a total lockdown of all persons. Other large cities like NYC are considering following their lead. “These are really tough decisions……It would be irresponsible to take anything off the table…” Sununu solemnly told reporters at a press conference on Tuesday featuring leaders from each part of the state’s government.
Less than 24 hours after Sununu issued his order, Liberty Legal PLLC announced a lawsuit against Sununu seeking to reverse the Governor’s emergency order that restricts public gatherings of 50 or more people and mandates that food and beverage sales must only be carry-our, delivery, or drive-through. Liberty Legal PLLC filed the lawsuit on behalf of clients Holly Beene, David Binford, and Eric Couture. Attorney Dan Hynes agreed to take the case pro bono commenting that “it is an important constitutional issue”.
An outspoken conservative and former State Representative, Hynes has not been shy about his disagreement with the Governor’s order. The attorney and his clients believe that the executive order violates the Constitution, our natural freedoms, and will hurt the economy, according to their lawsuit. Further, the governor’s mandate that police “enforce” his order is vague, overly broad, and lacks legal authority.
A New Hampshire judge denied the plaintiffs’ motion for an immediate injunction on Wednesday, but a hearing has been scheduled for Friday at 10 AM.
UPDATE 3/20: The judge has denied the plaintiffs’ request for an injunction. According to the court, the Governor criminalizing the assembly of people does not violate the Constitution.