Today we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia in defense of a service member whose cell phone was searched and seized by the military in an unlawful manner. As we have in the Jones case, the Graham case, the Zodhiates case, and others we explain how the Fourth Amendment first and foremost protects property rights, not some vague “reasonable expectation of privacy.”
Today we filed a brief in the Second Circuit challenging the Government’s use of cell phone location information obtained from a cell phone provider in response to a grand jury subpoena. We explain that under the Jones and Jardines textual/historic analysis that the cell phone user has a protected privacy interest in these records.
Accordingly, under the Fourth Amendment, the Government must seek them by warrant issued from a judicial officer issued “upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
Today we filed in the U.S. Supreme Court an amicus brief supporting President Trump’s challenge to the Fourth Circuit decision which approved a Maryland judge’s injunction against his Executive Order. Our brief supports both President Trump’s application to stay this injunction, and supports his petition for certiorari. The brief addressed three broad points.
First, we explain how the rationale underlying the district and circuit court decision undermines the President’s inherent and statutory authority to control immigration into the United States. We ask the Court to consider whether this rationale could also be applied to enjoin Presidentially ordered military operations against Islamic nations.
Today, we filed our reply brief, responding to the arguments made by the
Indiana government’ opposition to our petition for certiorari.
Today, May 30, 2017, we filed an amicus brief in the Connecticut Supreme Court in support of gun manufacturers Bushmaster and Remington, who had been sued by the families of the Sandy Hook school shooting victims.
The plaintiffs in the case had brought a “negligent entrustment” claim, arguing that the AR-15 style rifle should never have been sold because it was foreseeable that it would be used in the crime. However, as we pointed out, neither the manufacturer, distributor, nor dealer did anything wrong with respect to this particular sale — the essence of a legal negligent entrustment claim. Rather, the Plaintiffs instead were making the policy argument that generally no one should ever be permitted to sell any AR-15. In other words, they were asking judges to legislate to ban AR-15 style rifles.
Today we filed a brief in the Sixth Circuit supporting a Christian Funeral Home in a suit by the EEOC on behalf of a man employed by that funeral home who would like to dress in women’s clothing for one year as he “transitions.” The EEOC made the naked assertion that the claim for this employee was supported by the text of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but failed to explain it. (The provision relating to “sex” was inserted into the bill by Virginia Congressman Howard W. Smith to prohibit discrimination against women, as a poison pill to kill the bill, but it passed anyway.) The EEOC relied solely on the Supreme Court’s 1989 decision in Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, which was said to prohibit “sexual stereotyping.” Our brief explains the weaknesses in that decision, and why it does not apply here. Lastly, we explained why the EEOC provision would undermine the funeral home’s Christian witness.
Today we filed our third amicus brief defending the Gloucester County School Board against an ACLU challenge on behalf of a girl who would like to be a boy. The prior litigation involved the Obama Administration’s directives to the School Board to open the boys room and boys locker and shower facilities to Gavin Grimm. However, President Trump rescinded those guidance letters. Therefore, the question before the Fourth Circuit no longer whether deference should be paid to the Executive Branch, but whether federal law requires School Boards to allow students to use whatever facilities they may choose to use based on the sex with which they may self-identify. This brief was a Supplemental Brief filed in the Fourth Circuit on that statutory issue.
Today, our firm was honored to have filed its 100th amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court. This brief supported a petition for certiorari filed by the state of Arizona. Arizona is seeking to have the Supreme Court review and reject a Ninth Circuit opinion which struck down Arizona’s decision not to issue driver’s licenses to illegal aliens who are part of President Obama’s unconstitutional DACA program.
Today, our firm filed its fourth brief in support of President Trump’s effort to impose immigration controls. This brief supported President Trump’s second Executive Order issued on March 6, 2017 — to secure our borders against entry by those coming from select countries where their background cannot be checked.
Our first two briefs were filed in the Washington State challenge, in the Ninth Circuit — one on February 6, 2017 and one on February 16, 2017, with respect to the first Trump Executive Order issued on January 27, 2017. Our third brief was filed in the Fourth Circuit in litigation brought by IRAP on March 31, 2017.
Today, we filed an amicus brief in the United States Supreme Court in support of a petition to protect the Crisis Pregnancy Centers in California. The California Reproductive FACT Act requires these pro-life centers to disseminate to those who seek its services, information explaining the easy availability of taxpayer subsidized abortion. Our brief explains that this state law violates the Declaration of Independence’s recognition of protected “unalienable rights,” violates the law of our Creator, violates the Constitution’s Free Speech protections, and violates the Free Exercise Clause. Lastly, we explain that the Ninth Circuit’s decision upholding this law has no limiting principle, and therefore could next be used to ban entirely Crisis Pregnancy Centers across the state.
Today, we filed an amicus brief in support of a motion to suppress evidence in a criminal case in the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas. The case is on remand from an appeal to the Tenth Circuit which resulted in a decision written by Judge (now Justice) Neil Gorsuch. Gorsuch had pointed out that the search of an email with its attachments could constitute a violation of the email owner’s property interest protected by the Fourth Amendment, applying the Supreme Court’s United States v. Jones principle. Our amicus brief pointed out that the Jones property principle is primary, but also, the search of the email violated the defendant’s privacy interest in the communications.
Today we co-counseled the filing of a Petition for Writ of Certiorari in the United States Supreme Court on behalf of Patriotic Veterans, a nonprofit organization based in Illinois. This Petition brings to the High Court a First Amendment challenge to an Indiana law barring most nonprofit organizations from using automated dialing equipment to conduct issue advocacy and grassroots lobbying. Our Petition explains that the First Amendment, as reaffirmed by a long line of Supreme Court decisions, vests in each homeowner the right to decide whether to receive a visitor at a door, and that same principle applies to receiving a message delivered by telephone. State legislators are often annoyed when constituents learn what bills are pending, and what is going on behind closed doors in the legislature. They are particularly annoyed when constituents besiege them with messages telling them how they want them to vote. However, state legislators have no right to enact laws to shut down issue advocacy and grassroots lobbying, intruding themselves between nonprofit organizations like Patriotic Veterans and the people of Indiana.
Today, our firm filed its third brief in support of President Trump’s effort to impose immigration controls. Our brief supported President Trump’s effort to secure our borders against entry by those coming from select countries where their background cannot be checked. This brief was filed in the Fourth Circuit — with respect to the second Trump Executive Order issued on March 6, 2017.
Today we filed an amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to review a deeply flawed decision of the Virginia Supreme Court involving the Fourth Amendment. The cased involved different ways that courts evaluate the constitutionality of searches and seizures. The search in this case was of a motorcycle under a tarp located what is known as the “curtilage” of a home, or the area immediately surrounding it. Under the deeply flawed rule the Virginia Supreme Court applied, the Fourth Amendment has no bearing at all whenever an automobile or anything that resembles an automobile is being searched, irrespective of where the automobile is located.
Today, we filed our second amicus brief in this case, in support of a petition for rehearing en banc in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. We urged the Fourth Circuit to rehear the case, because the panel decision ignored the requirements of the U.S. Constitution’s Full Faith and Credit clause. The issue involved a Maryland resident’s right to purchase and possess firearms despite the judicial removal of disability to own firearms by a Virginia court after a Virginia conviction.
Today, we filed an amicus brief in the Supreme Court in support of a petition for writ of certiorari, asking the Court to review a California ban on mental health providers pro-hetrosexual therapies to minors. Interestingly, the California law, SB 1172, does not ban pro-homosexual therapies. We reject the notion that the Free Exercise Clause was written to give special rights to religious people. We explain that SB 1172 violates the Free Exercise Clause, which operates as a jurisdictional barrier to the power of States, barring California’s encroachment upon matters of opinion outside its civil jurisdiction. We also demonstrated that the State’s inherent police power does not permit it to conditioning licensing in order to suppress politically correct and morally unpopular medical treatments under the guise of protecting minors.
Today we filed a brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the petition for certiorari filed in the Peruta challenge to California concealed carry laws. Our brief, however, urged the Supreme Court to grant certiorari to review a broader issue than that sought by the petitioners, and based on a more robust understanding of the protections afforded by Second Amendment than that urged by petitioners.
Today we filed a brief in support of rehearing by the Ninth Circuit en banc, of the Ninth Circuit’s motions panel denial of the Trump Administration’s motion for a stay of the Temporary Restraining Order issued by a federal district judge in Washington State enjoining operation of the President’s Executive Order on immigration and refugees.
We previously filed another brief in this case on February 6, 2017, in support of the Trump Administration’s motion for stay.
Today we filed an amicus brief in the Ninth Circuit in support of a motion to stay a Temporary Restraining Order issued by the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington, which prohibited enforcement of several sections of President Trump’s recent Executive Order temporarily suspending entry of certain immigrants and refugees into the United States.
Today we filed a brief for the Free Speech Coalition and a large number of nonprofit orgainzations opposing efforts by the Attorney General of California to compel the disclosure by nonprofit organizations soliciting funds in that state of the names of their largest donors.
The issue in the case involves conditioning the ability to fundraise in California on disclosing confidential information to a politician — in this case, a state Attorney General. Our brief explains why the First Amendment’s Anonymity principle applies, and why all such laws are unconstitutional licensing schemes. We also explain why the federal tax scheme governing the filing of IRS Form 990 Schedule B’s protects the identity of donors, and that state officials can only obtain this information upon making a specific showing of illegal activity. Therefore, this requirement, imposed by the Attorney General of California, is an unconstitutional prophylactic rule unrelated to any showing of fraud.
Today we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit opposing efforts by the Attorney General of New York from implementing new procedures requiring every nonprofit organization which solicits funds in that state to provide him with the names, addresses, and donation amounts of the organization’s largest donors. Although the Attorney General of New York insists that the information would be kept by him and not shared with the public, the First Amendment protects Americans from divulging their anonymous political activities to politicians — especially highly political politicians like state attorney generals — who know how to use their discretionary power to chill the political activities of wealthy individuals.
Today, our firm filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in support of a school board whose policy is that students should use the bathroom associated with their fixed biological sex, rather than the one that corresponds to their subjective “gender identity.”
The Obama Administration’s Department of Education had joined the lawsuit in support of a troubled young woman who thinks that she “is” a man, and who demanded to use the boy’s bathroom at her school.
Today we filed an amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to review an appeal filed by the Independent Institute challenging the disclosure requirements imposed by the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (“BCRA”) as applied to genuine issue ads. BCRA compels the disclosure of donors to such ads over $1,000, with substantial civil and criminal penalties for failure to report this information publicly.
Today we filed a brief in support of the practice by the Rowan County Board of Commissioners to begin sessions with prayer. Predictably, the plaintiffs are deeply offended to hear the name of God mentioned, but their subjective feelings does not cause the public prayer by government officials to be transformed into a prohibited “establishment” of religion.
The Alabama Court of the Judiciary removed Roy S. Moore, the elected Chief Justice of the State of Alabama, based on spurious grounds related to the U.S. Supreme Court’s Obergefell decision in favor of same sex marriage. Today, we filed a brief in support of the Chief Justice’s appeal of that decision to the Alabama Supreme Court.
In our 55-page brief, in addition to other issues, our brief takes on the distinctly unconstitutional notion that decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court constitute the Supreme Law of the Land.