Federalism

In Houston Community College System v. Wilson the U.S. Supreme Court will decide whether the First Amendment restricts the authority of an elected body to issue a censure resolution in response to a member’s speech.

David Wilson was an elected trustee of the Houston Community College System (HCC). In response to the board’s decision to fund a campus in Qatar, which he disagreed with, he arranged robocalls and was...

In Uzuegbunam v. Preczewski the Supreme Court held 8-1 that to have a “redressable injury” required to bring a lawsuit a plaintiff need only ask for nominal damages ($1). The State and Local Legal Center (SLLC) filed an amicus brief in this case asking the Court to hold that a lawsuit for nominal damages only is moot...

A divided U.S. Supreme Court struck down California’s “Tier 1” total ban on indoor religious services, while allowing a 25% capacity limitation. Most of the state is currently under Tier 1 COVID-19 restrictions. It also allowed California’s to continue banning singing and chanting during indoor services.

While a number of Justices issued opinions, the Court issued no majority opinion.  Chief Justice Roberts’ two-...

In an 8-0 decision in City of Chicago v. Fulton, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the City of Chicago didn’t violate the Bankruptcy Code’s automatic stay provision by holding onto a vehicle impounded after a bankruptcy petition was filed.  The State and Local Legal Center (SLLC) filed an amicus brief in this case asking the...

In Americans for Prosperity v. Becerra and Thomas More Law Center v. Becerra the petitioners claim that a California law requiring them to submit to the California Attorney General their IRS Form 990 Schedule B, which lists their largest donors, violates the First Amendment. California law requires the Attorney General to...

In City of San Antonio, Texas v. Hotels.com, L.P. the Supreme Court will decide whether a federal district court has discretion to waive appellate costs which in this case the City of San Antonio had to pay Hotels.com after the Hotels.com won its appeal.  

The City of San Antonio won in federal district court a class action lawsuit against online travel companies (OTCs) requiring them to collect occupancy taxes on...

In Danville Christian Academy v. Beshear the U.S. Supreme Court allowed a Sixth Circuit decision to remain in place which upheld Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear’s executive order closing all K-12 schools, including religious schools, from November 18 until January 4 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The governor’s “school” executive order temporarily closed all elementary, middle, and high schools but allowed preschools, colleges, and...

The U.S. Supreme Court sent two cases involving limits on religious service attendance back to lower courts to reconsider in light of Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn, New York v. Cuomo. In that case the Court ruled 5-4 that New York’s limits on attending religious services to 10 or 25 people while grocery stores, banks, and laundromats, etc. could admit as many people as the liked, likely violated the First Amendment. Prior to the New York case the...

In NCAA. v. Alston and AAC v. Alston the U.S. Supreme Court will decide whether the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) eligibility rules which prohibit pay-to-play violate antitrust law. The Ninth Circuit ruled against the NCAA. Numerous state legislatures have...

Over no noted dissents and without an opinion, the Supreme Court ordered a federal district court to decide again whether California may ban all indoor religious services in counties most severely hit by COVID-19. The order instructs the federal district court to reconsider this case, Harvest Rock Church v. Newsome, in light of the Supreme Court decision last week in...

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