The Supreme Court ruled friday that lockdown rules during the Covid-19 pandemic do not place an unconstitutional burden on free speech. The court's four liberals were joined by chief justice John Roberts to form a 5-4 majority over the other conservative justices; the case concerned a church's right to fill the pews after California governor Gavin Newsome imposed a 25%-or-100-person occupancy limit.
Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the court's liberals in rejecting a San Diego church's request for relief from Gov. Gavin Newsom's most recent directive limiting churches to 25% of their normal maximum capacity, with an absolute maximum of 100 people at any service.
In a three-page opinion issued just before the stroke of midnight Washington time, Roberts said it would be unwise for the court to intervene on an emergency basis as state officials try to grapple with the ebb and flow of a pandemic caused by a highly infectious and sometimes deadly virus.