Law

Judge blocks Trump’s order on sanctuary cities

Featured image Judge William Orrick, III, appointed by President Obama after he raised at least $200,000 for his fellow left-liberal, has issued an order blocking President Trump from withholding funds to communities that limit cooperation with U.S. immigration authorities. Judge Orrick ruled that the president has no authority to attach new conditions to federal spending. The ruling sounds high-minded and principled. However, as someone said in an email, if a city wanted »

75 year-old vet acquitted of placing American flag at VA facility

Featured image A U.S. District Court in California has declared 75-year-old veteran Robert Rosebrock not guilty of violating federal law in a prosecution for allegedly displaying two four-by-six inch American flags above a Veterans Affairs fence on Memorial Day 2016. Rosebrock had been charged with hanging the two napkin-sized American flags on a section of the fence adjacent to the entrance to the VA facility in violation of a VA regulation prohibiting »

Court strikes down Guam’s racist voting scheme

Featured image Six years ago, retired Air Force officer Arnold Davis, a resident of Guam, tried to register to vote on a plebiscite regarding Guam’s future. His application was rejected and marked as “void” by the Guam Election Commission Why? Because Guam banned residents from registering or voting unless they are Chamorro “natives,” which to the territorial government means people whose ancestors were original inhabitants of Guam. Chamorros constitute only about 36 »

Hawaii judge’s ruling could lead to constitutional crisis

Featured image When a Ninth Circuit panel issued a decision striking down President Trump’s original travel ban, I described its opinion as “limited in impact, but full of mischief.” The biggest piece of mischief, I thought, was the panel’s suggestion the administration’s order violates the Establishment and Equal Protection Clauses because it was intended to disfavor Muslims. Citing statements made by Trump when he ran for president, the panel found that this »

Iraq omitted from new travel order. Why?

Featured image John discussed the Trump administration’s revised travel order in a post below. He says it looks bullet proof, and so it does. However, I can’t help but suspect that if the same judges who reviewed the original order rule on its successor, the outcome might well be the same, with new concerns providing the basis for an anti-administration ruling. This time around, though, I’m confident the administration is prepared to »

Supreme Court vacates bathroom ruling, sends case back to lower court

Featured image The Supreme Court has vacated a Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling in favor of Gavin Grimm, a Virginia transgender student who sought to use the boys room at school despite being a female biologically. The Court sent the case back to the Fourth Circuit for reconsideration in light of the Trump administration’s revocation of Obama-era guidance that supported Grimm’s claim under Title IX. The Fourth Circuit had relied heavily »

Does the NFL combine violate the ADA?

Featured image If your answer is, “you can’t be serious,” you’re not fully in tune with the contemporary landscape. On the other hand, your common sense quotient is high. The NFL scouting combine is basically an audition by more than 300 of the best collegiate football players who are eligible for the NFL draft. They come to Indianapolis each year to undergo on-field workouts, medical testing, interviews, and psychological testing. The workouts »

Law profs file frivolous bar complaint against Kellyanne Conway

Featured image Years ago, a public figure in the Reagan administration was accused of lying to Congress. Reportedly, he ridiculed the charge by asking “what’s next, lying to Evans and Novak?” Evans and Novak were prominent journalists of the time. They hosted a television show. Thirty years later, a group of leftist law professors is charging Kellyanne Conway with, in effect, “lying to Evans and Novak.” The Washington Post reports that 15 »

Sally Yates’s legacy of injustice

Featured image Long-time Power Line reader Howard Root abandoned his legal practice at Minneapolis’s Dorsey law firm and his work as general counsel of a medical device company to design highly useful medical products himself and to found the successful medical device company Vascular Solutions. He has nevertheless chosen to take a hike. In yesterday’s Wall Street Journal Howard gives a glimpse of his harrowing story with a local Minnesota angle. Here »

What will Trump’s new travel ban look like?

Featured image The Trump administration has decided not to continue litigating over its executive order on travel. Instead it will issue a new order that addresses the main concerns expressed by the Ninth Circuit. What changes will this entail? Jacob Sullum at Reason identifies the three changes he expects to see. First, he says, the new order will explicitly exclude lawful permanent residents from the travel ban. The key word here is »

HP pressures law firms to engage in discrimination

Featured image Kim Rivera, the chief legal officer and general counsel of HP Inc., has sent a letter to law firms that represent that company. The letter “mandates” (HP’s word) that these firms meet racial, ethnic, and gender quotas she has set for them. Rivera states that HP will withhold up to 10 percent of any amount invoiced by the law firms if they “do not meet or exceed our minimal diverse »

The case of Margarita Del Pilar Fitzpatrick

Featured image Of course noncitizens never vote, a faithful reader sarcastically writes. Our reader practices immigration law and directs us to the Seventh Circuit opinion in Fitzpatrick v. Sessions, hot off the press yesterday in the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. The Seventh Circuit opinion briefly summarizes the factual background: Margarita Del Pilar Fitzpatrick, a citizen of Peru, had lived in the United States for three years when »

Al Franken triples down on stupid

Featured image I’m not enough of an elitist to believe that only Senators with legal training should serve on the Senate Judiciary Committee. However, the ability to engage competently in legal reasoning ought to be a prerequisite. In his work on the Judiciary Committee, Al Franken has failed to display this ability. Indeed, he shows a lack of competence in basic logic that, in a better world, would disqualify him from the »

Somebody get me out of here

Featured image The federal courts of appeals routinely operate in randomly assigned panels of three judges. Appeals from their decisions may be taken to the United States Supreme Court and are heard mostly as a matter of the Supreme Court’s discretion. When a federal appellate decision conflicts with a previous decision of the same court, or with a decision of the United States Supreme Court, or (more rarely) presents a question of »

9th Circuit balks at split; Jeff Flake calls it out

Featured image Yesterday, in a post about the Ninth Circuit panel’s decision regarding the Trump administration’s executive on entry into the U.S., I suggested that Republicans should consider legislation to split up that court. The reason is simple: the court is too big. It encompasses nine states and has 29 slots (of which 25 are currently filled, I believe). The court’s size means that, unlike with other federal appeals courts, when it »

A Ninth Circuit footnote [With Comment by John] [Updated]

Featured image The Ninth Circuit has ruled against the Trump administration’s motion for a stay pending appeal of Judge Robart’s order restraining the Trump administration from enforcing the executive order calling a brief timeout on the admission of refugees from seven designated countries (a/k/a “travel ban”) in the Ninth Circuit just concluded. This can’t be a surprise to anyone who tuned in to the oral argument of the motion. The Ninth Circuit »

The Ninth Circuit’s ruling — limited in impact but full of mischief

Featured image Dan McLaughlin at NRO has written a good analysis of the Ninth Circuit’s ruling against the Trump administration’s travel ban. His analysis is comprehensive. In this post, I will quote what I consider the most significant portion: [T]he court found that the government was not likely to win its case – the standard on a preliminary injunction, before all the evidence has been heard – on whether the executive order »