Activists and pastors have filed a lawsuit against Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott for imposing coronavirus-related stay-at-home orders, alleging the orders violate their constitutional rights.
Conservative activist Steve Hotze and several Houston-area pastors accused Abbott and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton of “imposing draconian, unconstitutional requirements” on Texans in a suit filed Thursday in Travis County, according to the Houston Chronicle.
“Once government and its constituents start operating on the basis of fear rather than facts, they are willing to take whatever medicine is prescribed, no matter how harmful the side effects may be,” the suit said, according to the Houston Chronicle. (RELATED: Planned Parenthood, Abortion Providers Take Texas Coronavirus Abortion Ban To Supreme Court)
“Churches and small businesses are shut down, and Texans right to move about freely is restricted. For all practical purposes, the governor’s executive order constitutes a ‘lock-down.’”
Hotze and others in the suit also sued Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo over her stay-at-home order — issuedbefore Abbott’s order — which deemed churches essential services, the Texas Tribune reported. Abbott said church services could continue but members should practice social-distancing measures.
Abbott is expected to lay out at least some of his plans to begin reopening the Texas economy Friday, the Texas Tribune reported. Texas has 16,455 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and 393 deaths, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.