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Attorney General William Barr has issued a statement directing “prosecutors to prioritize cases against those seeking to illicitly profit from the pandemic,” including where government officials have violated the constitutional rights and civil liberties of individuals and imposed special restrictions and discriminatory treatment on religious activity and churches.

Attorney General Barr stated in his “Balancing Public Safety with the Preservation of Civil Rights” memorandum, “As the Department of Justice explained recently in guidance to states and localities taking steps to battle the pandemic, even in times of emergency, when reasonable and temporary restrictions are placed on rights, the First Amendment and federal statutory law prohibit discrimination against religious institutions and religious believers. The legal restrictions on state and local authority are not limited to discrimination against religious institutions and religious believers. But the Constitution is not suspended in times of crisis. We must therefore be vigilant to ensure its protections are preserved, at the same time that the public is protected” (emphasis added). 

Attorney General William Barr has issued a statement directing “prosecutors to prioritize cases against those seeking to illicitly profit from the pandemic,” including where government officials have violated the constitutional rights and civil liberties of individuals and imposed special restrictions and discriminatory treatment on religious activity and churches.

Attorney General Barr stated in his “Balancing Public Safety with the Preservation of Civil Rights” memorandum, “As the Department of Justice explained recently in guidance to states and localities taking steps to battle the pandemic, even in times of emergency, when reasonable and temporary restrictions are placed on rights, the First Amendment and federal statutory law prohibit discrimination against religious institutions and religious believers. The legal restrictions on state and local authority are not limited to discrimination against religious institutions and religious believers. But the Constitution is not suspended in times of crisis. We must therefore be vigilant to ensure its protections are preserved, at the same time that the public is protected” (emphasis added). 

Author: Liberty Counsel