The US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has ruled that the City of Flint is not immune from the federal lawsuit pending against it following the infamous decision by public officials to save costs by switching the city's water supply to corrosive Flint River water that would be processed by an outdated water plant, sickening local residents as a result. Though the Court's decision dismissed three former state officials, it ruled that city officials were not immune, as the city's emergency management status had not made the city's water functions an "arm of the state."
On Tuesday, December 18, 2018, Damien Guedes, a Pennsylvania citizen who purchased a bump stock device in 2014, the Firearms Policy Coalition, Firearms Policy Foundation, and Madison Society Foundation filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia against the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives challenging the Trump administration's ban on bump stock devices.
Federal Judge in Massachusetts Rules Secretly Recording Government Officials in Public Protected by First Amendment
On Monday, a federal judge in Massachusetts ruled unconstitutional a state law that had the effect of prohibiting all secret recordings of any encounter with a police officer or other government official. According to Chief Judge Patti B. Saris, of the US District Court for the District of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts law is not sufficiently "narrowly tailored to serve a significant government interest" to curtail the plaintiffs' free speech rights under the First Amendment.
U.S. Supreme Court Remands Case to Eighth Circuit to Consider Whether Mandatory State Bar Association Fees Involve Compelled Association and Compelled Speech
On Monday, December 3, 2018, the United States Supreme Court vacated the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals's decision in Fleck v. Wetch, No. 16-1564 (8th Cir. 2017) and remanded the case to the 8th Circuit to decide whether mandatory state bar association fees translate to compelled association and compelled speech.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has struck down a challenge to a New Jersey law which limits the amount of ammunition, to no more than 10 rounds, that may be held in a single magazine of a firearm. The law was enacted in response to the rise of…
Two lawsuits were filed earlier this week against Harvard University over a campus policy discouraging private, single-sex organizations. International sorority Alpha Phi, it's local Cambridge chapter, and a housing management company that represents the Delta Gamma Fraternity sued Harvard in Massachusetts state court. The second lawsuit was filed in federal federal court by three anonymous Harvard students, sororities Kappa Alpha Theta and Kappa Kappa Gamma, and fraternities Sigma Chi and Sigma Alpha Epsilon.
United States Department of Justice Argues President Trump Complied With Federal Statutes and the United States Constitution When Appointing Acting Attorney General
On Wednesday, November 14, 2018, the United States Department of Justice provided a twenty page memo to President Donald J. Trump arguing that President Trump's appointment of Acting Attorney General Matthew G. Whitaker complied with federal statutes and the U.S. Constitution, and that the appointment is "[c]onsistent with our prior opinion and with centuries of historical practice and precedents."
Two Florida district courts have reached clashing conclusions on whether a suspect in a criminal case can invoke the Fifth Amendment to withhold their iPhone passcode from law enforcement. In the older case, State of Florida v. Stahl, the court ruled that a criminal suspect does not have this right under the Constitution. (This case involved…