Declaring that while “some governors have deemed liquor stores…essential” but not permitting churches and other houses of worship a mistake, President Donald Trump declared places of worship as essential services.
“These are places that hold our society together and keep our people united. The people are demanding to go to church and synagogue, go to their mosque,” the President added, saying our first amendment right was more important than some other businesses labeled as essential.
Trump also warned that that he would overrule governors who don’t comply. However, constitutional experts believe that act would violate out 10th amendment.
The White House had rejected the CDC’s draft guidelines for reopening places of worship as too restrictive.
The rejected the recent draft CDC guidelines which recommended that houses of worship temporarily stop using shared materials including prayer books, hymnals, and collection trays for donations. It also suggested not having musical groups perform.
“The churches are not being treated with respect by a lot of the Democrat governors,” Trump said. “I want to get the churches open . . . including mosques.”
Churches around the country have filed legal challenges to the virus closures.
In Minnesota, after Democratic Gov. Tim Walz this week declined to lift restrictions on churches, Roman Catholic and some Lutheran leaders said they would defy his ban and resume worship services.
Trump’s comments also came after Chicago began fining churches for holding services that do not comply with Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s statewide stay-at-home order.
Some churches, such as one in Georgia, had reopened but later closed after worshippers came down with the coronavirus.