Roy Moore Is Advising Church Defying Coronavirus Order

'There is no more clear violation of the First Amendment,' he says
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 3, 2020 8:27 AM CDT
Roy Moore Speaks at Church Defying COVID-19 Order
Pastor Tony Spell speaks to the media after holding an evening service at the Life Tabernacle Church in Central, La., Tuesday, March 31, 2020.   (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

(Newser) – After losing heavily in his bid to run for a Senate seat again, former Alabama Supreme Court chief justice Roy Moore is riding into battle once more—against measures to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Moore appeared Thursday at the Life Tabernacle Church in Central City, Louisiana, which has been flouting a statewide ban on gatherings of more than 10 people. He vowed to support and protect Pastor Tony Spell, who is facing charges for violating the order, NBC News reports. "There is no more clear violation of the First Amendment than this prohibition to assemble in a church," Moore told dozens of parishioners from the pulpit.

"We've got to remember the First Amendment exists because we can worship God the way we want to and no government can come in and tell you you can't assemble in church," said Moore. He slammed Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards for not labeling religious institutions essential services, as the governors of Florida and Texas have done. Moore said he would apply to practice law in Louisiana and serve as co-counsel for Spell and the church, reports the Advocate. Spell, who held a church service hours after being hit with six misdemeanor charges, says the pandemic is "politically motivated" and the faithful do not fear COVID-19. "The virus is attracted to fear, and we are fearless people," he told reporters Thursday. (Read more Roy Moore stories.)

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