Judge Michael McHaney has ordered Governor JB Pritzker to appear being him next Friday afternoon to explain why he should not be held in indirect civil contempt. The order was entered at the request of State Representative Darren Bailey. His motion complained the Governor is ignoring a previous court order by continuing to exercise emergency powers beyond the 30 days allowed under state law.
Meanwhile, Illinois House Republican leader Jim Durkin is calling on the Governor to abandon his ‘mask rule’ announced Friday and immediately call the legislature into special session. Durkin says he is committed to respecting the Governor’s priorities while recognizing the undue hardship his current rule places on businesses that are already struggling across Illinois. Durkin would also like to have the session include the urgent need for ethics reform and the controversies surrounding the Democratic Party and Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives.
The Governor’s Press Secretary Jordan Abudayyeh has issued a response to the action taken in Clay County Court. She says on the same day the Governor asked the General Assembly to do more to keep Illinoisans safe, the House GOP is instead rejecting science and perpetuating a sideshow to the global pandemic. She calls the motion for contempt a legally baseless, frivolous, and a distraction from the serious crisis facing Illinois. Abudayyeh says the Governor will continue to focus on protecting public health and not on the political sideshow in Clay County.
Abudayyeh maintains existing public health rules allow the state to take action to stop the spread of infectious diseases like whooping cough, measles, and many others and should include COVID-19. She says the only difference now is there is a loud super-minority playing politics with public health.