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Court Ruling Compels Washington Gov. Inslee to Lift Hard Cap on Church Attendance

Described Christian religious services as 'COVID-19 "superspreader" events...'

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee lifted the 200-person capacity limit on churches after the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against restrictions in Nevada that did not account for a building’s occupancy, the Tri-City Herald reported.

Inslee left in place the order restricting indoor attendance at churches to 25 percent of their capacity limit.

The tyrannical governor still mandates physical distancing and mask-wearing, and he prohibits the right of worshipers to praise God in song.

He described church services as “COVID-19 ‘superspreader’ events,” despite a lack of evidence that viruses spread more easily at churches than at grocery stores or retailers.

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The 9th Circuit ruled that Nevada could not place arbitrary capacity limits on churches, especially when hard attendance caps did not apply to businesses, such as casinos.

Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Ryan Tucker said Inslee’s decision corrects unconstitutional discrimination against religion.

“Gov. Inslee has finally acknowledged that even during this difficult time, the First Amendment cannot be put away and forgotten,” Tucker said in a press release. “As the Supreme Court recently affirmed, the Constitution doesn’t allow government officials to treat religious Americans like second-class citizens.”

ADF sued the governor in Christ’s Church of Mt. Spokane v. Inslee for unconstitutionally restricting religious gatherings while calling cannabis dispensaries, breweries, and union meetings “essential.”

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“There is no constitutional right to cannabis or alcohol, but there is one that protects attending worship services,” Tucker said.

“We’re grateful the governor has acknowledged our clients’ First Amendment freedoms,” he continued. “Yesterday’s announcement from the governor is not only a win for Christ’s Church of Mt. Spokane and Westgate Chapel, it’s good news for all Washingtonians.”

The governor dropped the restrictions to avoid an embarrassing defeat in the courts.

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