Salem Journalist Amy Jacobson Sues Illinois Governor
|RADIO ONLINE | Monday, June 1, 2020|
Salem Media Group, Inc. and veteran Chicago journalist Amy Jacobson have filed a federal lawsuit against Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker after he announced Jacobson is no longer allowed at his media briefings. The lawsuit, Salem Media of Illinois, LLC v. Pritzker, was filed today in the Northern District of Illinois. Attorneys also are asking the court to take immediate action to allow Jacobson back into the press briefings.
Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker was one of the first governors in America to issue a statewide "stay-at-home" order, and has said that Illinoisans cannot resume normal activities until a "vaccine or highly-effective treatment" is available. He has also been critical of states that have lifted their lockdown orders.
On Friday, May 15, Jacobson broke the story that Pritzker's family had traveled to their equestrian estate in Wisconsin amid Illinois's stay-at-home order - weeks after it was reported that his family was at another estate in Florida. The news raised questions about why the stay-at-home order did not apply to the governor's family.
On the day of the governor's next press briefing, Pritzker's press secretary told Jacobson she was banned from the briefings because she had attended a rally advocating for Illinois to end its lockdown. When questioned by reporters about Jacobson's exclusion the next day, Pritzker told the press corps that Jacobson could not attend because advocating for Illinois to end its stay-at-home order represents an "extreme position."
Jacobson has worked for various television and radio stations across the country for more than 25 years and for the last decade has been a reporter and morning show host on Salem Media's Chicago station, AM 560 The Answer.
"We're disappointed that the governor would retaliate against her and take the unprecedented step of blocking her from his press briefings, said Jeff Reisman, RVP/GM of AM 560 The Answer. "We had hoped litigation would not be necessary, but it's imperative for Amy to get back into the room and keep doing her job."
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