2nd Circuit Upholds Secondary Accommodation on Contraception

The 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld the legality of the secondary accommodation given to religious non-profits as an exemption from the Affordable Care Act's contraception requirement. It's the 7th appeals court to do so, out of 13 total. The court rejected the plaintiffs' "substantial burden" claim. … [Read more...]

Another Terrible Court Ruling on Drug Dogs

My old friend Radley Balko takes note of a recent ruling from the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals that is quite appalling, though in line with the equally terrible Supreme Court precedents in the area. He explains the details of this particular case: … [Read more...]

ACLU Challenges Ohio Grant to Christian Sports Group

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine has decided to give a $300,000 grant to Athletes in Action, a Christian group that uses sports to proselytize young people, and the ACLU is challenging that. No lawsuit has been filed yet, apparently, but they're making a strong public statement against it. … [Read more...]

Republicans File Really Dumb Gerrymandering Suit in Florida

After a judge ordered the Florida legislature to redraw several legislative districts that were clearly created only to ensure safe Republican seats, two Republican officials in the state have filed a really, really stupid lawsuit claiming this violates their free speech rights. … [Read more...]

Staver’s Arguments Are Getting Worse

Mat Staver, the dumbest lawyer in America not named Larry Klayman, seems to actually be getting worse at lawyering. In the case involving the Kentucky clerk who is demanding the right to not do her job, he makes two more profoundly silly arguments: … [Read more...]

Staver Has A New and, Errr, Interesting Argument

Mat Staver, the dumbest lawyer in America not named Larry Klayman, is known for making novel legal arguments (none of which work, of course) and he came up with a real doozy in a filing in the case in which he is defending a county clerk in Kentucky who refuses to issue same-sex marriage licenses. He says it violates the No Religious Tests clause of the Constitution. … [Read more...]

The Supreme Court Matters. A Lot.

David Cole reviews three recent books about the Supreme Court and points out the obvious, that the makeup of the Supreme Court, a direct result of which party controls the White House, has a massive effect on the nation. Just contemplate how differently the last 9 years might have gone: … [Read more...]

4th Circuit Upholds Overturning of VA’s Marriage Ban

The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower court ruling overturning Virginia's ban on same-sex marriage. It was a 2-1 ruling with two judges appointed by George W. Bush in the majority and one appointed by Ronald Reagan in dissent. The ruling applies to Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and North and South Carolina. From the majority opinion: … [Read more...]

Defending My Recent Reasonable Doubts Appearance

A couple weeks ago I was interviewed by my good friends who do the Reasonable Doubts podcast, just a few days after the Hobby Lobby ruling came down. I said then much the same thing that I said here, that I think it's a very bad ruling but not nearly as far-reaching as some have said it was. A couple of commenters on the RD blog seem to have been highly upset by my position and I'm going to answer their arguments here. Brooks Austin seems to be particularly agitated by what I said, saying I was … [Read more...]

Justice Kennedy States the Obvious

Justice Anthony Kennedy addressed the annual conference of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals a few days ago and said something that is obviously true but is bound to make a lot of conservatives lose their mind. Actually, he said two things that will do that. The first: … [Read more...]

Huge Victory for Secular Celebrants

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has given us a major victory, ruling in a case brought by CFI Indiana that the state must allow secular celebrants to solemnize marriages along with clergy. The ruling was by a three-judge panel that included two legendary conservative/libertarian legal scholars, Judge Frank Easterbrook and Judge Richard Posner. … [Read more...]

SCOTUS and Marriage Equality, Round 2

The state of Utah is asking the Supreme Court to hear an appeal of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that upheld a district court ruling that overturned their ban on same-sex marriage as unconstitutional. Lyle Denniston explains the situation: … [Read more...]