Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission Amicus Brief in Support of Appellant U.S. Supreme Court

Michael Harless Constitutional Law, Election Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today, our firm filed an amicus curiae brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in support of appellant Citizens United on a supplemental question. The amicus brief urges that Citizens United’s challenge to federal regulation of electioneering communications be sustained, and the decisions in Austin v. Michigan State Chamber of Commerce andMcConnell v. FEC, as applied to BCRA section 203, be overruled since they endorse an erroneous view of the freedom of speech that conflicts with Citizens United’s freedom of the press. Contrary to the assumptions in Austin and McConnell, the freedom of the press does not confer a special privilege upon the institutional press, but is enjoyed by all the people. Austin’s and McConnell’s narrow reading of the press freedom is not only contrary to history, but at odds with new realities of journalism. Read More

Free Speech Coalition, Inc. and Free Speech Defense and Education Fund, Inc. Comments on the FEC’s Proposed Regulations on Electioneering Communications (72 Fr 50261)

Michael Harless Administrative Law, Election Law

Today, we filed comments with the Federal Election Commission (“FEC”) on behalf of Free Speech Coalition and Free Speech Defense and Education Fund (“FSC/FSDEF”) regarding the FEC’s proposed rulemaking in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 25, 2007 decision in FEC v. Wisconsin Right to Life (WRTL II).  That decision upheld WRTL’s unrestricted right to publish issue ads during pre‑election periods, so long as it did not engage in “express advocacy or its functional equivalent.” Read More

Wisconsin Right to Life — Amicus Brief

Michael Harless Constitutional Law, Election Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we filed a Brief Amicus Curiae in the U.S. Supreme Court in the Wisconsin Right to Life case.  The brief asks the Court to reconsider its prior holdings in the McConnell and Buckley cases, and to strike down the Congressional ban on “electioneering communications.”  (We had previously filed an amicus brief in support of Wisconsin Right to Life when the case came before the Court last year.) Read More

Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act — U.S. Supreme Court Oral Argument

Michael Harless Election Law

With 12 consolidated cases challenging the constitutionality of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act, and only four appellant lawyers permitted to argue before the U.S. Supreme Court today, we were not permitted to present our case to the Court except through our written briefs.

We were pleased, however, that three of the issues which we litigated were repeatedly addressed during the oral argument in questions posed by the Justices: Read More

FEC Challenge — Response in Opposition to Allocation of Oral Argument TIme Proposed by Certain Appellants

Michael Harless Election Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we filed our Response of Appellants, Congressman Ron Paul, et al., in Opposition to Allocation of Oral Argument Time Proposed in Motion for Divided Argument of Certain Aligned Appellants. We previously asked the Supreme Court for 20 minutes of the four-hour oral argument time, while certain other appellants asked that we, and a few other appellants including the NRA, be given none of the oral argument time. Read More

Federal Election Commission v. Christine Beaumont, et al.

Michael Harless Election Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Our firm filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of, Inc., Conservative Legal Defense and Education Fund, Gun Owners of America, Inc., English First, and U.S. Justice Foundation in support of respondents Christine Beaumont, et al. urging the Court to affirm the decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit that struck down the Federal Election Campaign Act’s (FECA’s) ban on contributions by certain incorporated nonprofit advocacy groups in federal elections as unconstitutional. Read More