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'Unprecedented Damage': Politician, Businesses Ask U.S. Supreme Court To Lift Gov. Wolf's Coronavirus Shutdown Order

ALLEGHENY COUNTY (CNN/KDKA) -- A Pennsylvania statehouse candidate and a group of local businesses asked the U.S. Supreme Court Monday night to issue a stay on Gov. Tom Wolf's order closing all non-life-sustaining businesses due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The request -- filed by the campaign of Danny DeVito (an Allegheny County Republican), realtor Kathy Gregory, "B and J" laundry, Blueberry Hill golf course and Caledonia Land Company -- asserts that the Democratic governor's order is doing "unprecedented damage to the economy."

"The Executive Order has and is continuing to cause irreparable harm to the Petitioners and all those businesses and entities in the same non-life- sustaining classification as Petitioners," their court filing says.

Without intervention, the petitioners say they and "tens of thousands of other businesses may not be able to recover from the severe financial distress caused by the Order."

The Pennsylvania state Supreme Court rejected the challenge to Wolf's order earlier this month.

Monday's request underscores the strain that social distancing measures have put on businesses as governors across the US wrestle with when to reopen their economies.

For the fifth week in a row, millions of American workers applied for unemployment benefits, seeking financial relief as businesses remained shuttered due to coronavirus.

First-time claims for unemployment benefits totaled 4.4 million in the week ending April 18, after factoring in seasonal adjustments, the US Department of Labor said.

While Wolf has said he wants to reopen Pennsylvania in three phases beginning next month, he's touted the state's stay-at-home order as "the most prudent option to stop the spread of COVID-19 across our commonwealth."

More information on the Coronavirus pandemic:

The Pennsylvania Department of Health reported 885 additional positive cases of coronavirus statewide on Monday.

That increases the statewide total number of cases to 42,050.

In addition, state health officials are confirming 1,597 deaths statewide.

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