United States v. Zodhiates

admin Constitutional Law, U. S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit

Today we filed an amicus brief in the Second Circuit in support of a petition for rehearing en banc, asking the Court to reconsider its decision which misapplied the Supreme Court’s decision in Carpenter v. United States, 138 S.Ct. 2006 (June 22, 2018). The trial court allowed the government to introduce evidence of “Cell Site Location Information” (“CSLI”) obtained without a warrant, which the Carpenter decision affirmed was protected by the Fourth Amendment. (This is our second amicus brief that we filed in this case, the first being filed on July 26, 2017) Read More

Article: Washington Examiner — “Brett Kavanaugh will be very good for property rights”

admin Press Coverage

This article by Dick Patten of the American Business Defense Council  in the Washington Examiner about the appointment of Judge Kavanaugh references our article in Case Western School of Law Journal of Law, Technology & the Internet.  There, we discussed Judge Kavanaugh’s important dissent to the denial of a petition for rehearing en banc in a case that became United States v. Jones in the U.S. Supreme Court.  We analyzed Judge Kavanaugh’s dissent in our amicus brief in Jones, and Justice Scalia’s decision embraced the originalist property-based foundation for the Fourth Amendment. Read More

Law 360 Article Discusses our Harris Funeral Home Brief

admin Press Coverage, Statutory Construction

Bill Olson was quoted in an article by Braden Campbell called “States, Faith Groups Tell Justices To Hear Trans Bias Case,” in Law 360:  “’We have a lower federal judiciary that’s spinning out of control as circuits race toward political correctness, and if the Supreme Court doesn’t restore order, it’s hard to know where this is going to end,’ Olson said, referencing other rulings interpreting Title VII to cover gay workers.” Read More

Harris Funeral Homes v. EEOC

admin Statutory Construction, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court urging the court to grant a petition for certiorari to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit to review its decision giving a meaning to Title VII that Congress never intended.  The Sixth Circuit decided to change a 50-year old understanding of Title VII to accommodate to the demands of LGBTQ activists, by barring employment discrimination based on “sexual orientation.”  Our brief explained the radical nature of recent the Hively and Zarda cases where courts chose to amend Title VII under the guise of re-interpretation of the statute.  This follows on the two briefs we filed in Zarda, and the earlier brief we filed in the Harris Funeral Home case when it was in the Sixth Circuit. Read More

Article: Trump Administration Rift on LGBT Worker Rights Nears Showdown

admin Press Coverage, Statutory Construction

Chris Opfer of BNA News wrote an article about the Zarda case where we filed a brief and other similar cases.where LGBTQ? advocates are asking judges to re-write the 1964 Civil Rights Act to grant them special rights.

The Article quotes Bill Olson, saying “Not only is it an effort to have a societal sanction for an immoral lifestyle, but it’s being accomplished by unelected judges who are admitting they are changing the law,” Read More

American Legion v. American Humanist Association (Bladensburg Cross)

admin Constitutional Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today our firm filed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to block a Fourth Circuit decision which found that the Bladensburg (Maryland) War Memorial, which includes a 40-foot cross, violates the Establishment Clause.  The Fourth Circuit opinion discusses the relief being sought by a few Maryland residents to be either razing the Cross, or defacing it by cutting off its arms, and making it into an Egyptian obelisk. Read More

Altitude Express v. Zarda

admin Statutory Construction, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court supporting a petition for certiorari to review a circuit court decision giving homosexuals the right to sue employers, even though Congress never authorized such suits.  Ten liberal Second Circuit judges joined a decision to rewrite Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to prohibit discrimination against homosexuals in employment.  This follows a similar ruling from the Seventh Circuit. Read More

Gundy v. United States

admin Constitutional Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today, we filed an amicus merits brief in the Supreme Court addressing the 80-year old anti-delegation doctrine.  Our brief explains why the “intelligible principle” test that was adopted by the Court has failed to uphold the constitution’s structural integrity.  We explain that separation of powers is essential to preserve the liberty of the American people.  And we explain why it is particularly problematic for Congress to delegate to an unelected bureaucrat the power to criminalize behavior.

Link to brief

Comments to ATF Opposing Bump Stock Restrictions (Round 2)

admin Administrative Law, Firearms Law

Today we submitted another set of comments to ATF opposing its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking which would reverse long-standing ATF policy to determine, in violation of federal law, that a “bump fire” stock constitutes a “machinegun.”  Our comments were filed on behalf of Gun Owners Foundation.  Earlier, on January 18, 2018, we filed comments for GOF on the ATF’s Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.

Link to comments

Texas v. United States

admin Constitutional Law, U. S. District Court, Northern District of Texas

Today, we filed the only amicus brief supporting a 20-state challenge to Obamacare being led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.  The case is pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas  In December 2017, President Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, which eliminated the Obamacare penalty for failing to comply with the individual mandate.  The Texas lawsuit asks that Obamacare be declared unconstitutional in its entirety, since a zero tax cannot form the basis of the exercise of the taxing power.

Link to brief

United States v. Ackerman

admin Constitutional Law, U. S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit

Today we filed our second amicus brief in the Ackerman case. Our first brief was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas, and today’s brief was filed in the Tenth Circuit. This case involves the power of the government to conduct searches and seizures of email and attachments to email. The District Court decision upholding the search was entirely based on the “reasonable expectation of privacy” atextual judicial construct. When this case was before the Tenth Circuit previously, that Court raised the property basis of the Fourth Amendment set out in United States v. Jones in 2012, but this issue was not addressed by the District Court.
In the third section of our brief, we explain the history of the property foundation of the Fourth Amendment from before its ratification, through its abandonment, and now through its return to primacy in Fourth Amendment jurisprudence. (Now-Justice Gorsuch authored the earlier Tenth Circuit opinion focusing on the property principle.)

Link to brief

IFS v. Becerra

admin Constitutional Law, Nonprofit Law, U. S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

Today, we filed a brief in the Ninth Circuit supporting a challenge against the California Attorney General’s demands for the large donor lists (IRS Form 990 Schedule B) of charitable organizations who wish to register to solicit donations in that state. We argued that the AG’s requirement creates a condition precedent that violates the right to peacably assemble. We also explained that the new rule does not only risk public dissemination of donor information, as has already happened in California, but also the risk that politicized Attorney Generals in New York and California — Kamala Harris, Xavier Becerra, and Eric Schneiderman — would misuse the information. We also raised the distinct possibility that the AG is committing the federal crime of solicitation of taxpayer information because it is conditioning the ability to raise funds in California on the “voluntary” provision of the confidential donor lists. Finally, we argued that 9th Circuit precedent in similar cases improperly relied on election law cases, requiring that IFS’ case be heard en banc.

Link to brief

New York v. Trump (DACA)

admin Constitutional Law

Just before midnight tonight, we filed our fourth brief defending President Trump’s rescission of President Obama’s unconstitutional DACA program. This brief was filed in the Second Circuit, which is considering an appeal from a “nationwide” or “universal” injunction issued by one Democrat lawyer currently serving as an unelected federal district judge in Brooklyn, who had been appointed in 2000 by President Clinton — Nicholas G. Garaufis.

Link to brief