First Amendment Newsflash 2/5-2/18

Welcome to First Amendment Newsflash, the First Amendment Law Review’s bi-weekly roundup of the latest in free expression and religious freedom news and commentary. Check here every other Sunday for a new edition! Need First Amendment news in the meantime? Follow FALR on Twitter and Facebook for regular updates.2000px-Simpsons_tv_icon.svg

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Sakurambo


Federal Court News

The Second Circuit threw out a free speech challenge by Citizens United to New York’s requirement that registered charities disclose their donors annually.

The organizers of the Charlottesville rally plan to use a First Amendment defense to a lawsuit alleging that the rally organizers incited violence and are legally responsible for the 30 injuries and one death that occurred.

A brother and sister convicted of cyberstalking linked to the brother’s ex-wife’s death allege that their freedom of speech rights were violated.

A high school senior filed suit stating his First Amendment rights were violated after he was told not to interrupt the city mayor’s question and answer session at his high school.

Arguments have begun in the ACLU of San Diego’s appeal to the Ninth Circuit to rule that a U.S. Customs and Border Protection policy prohibiting photographers at border ports without permission violates the First Amendment.

The Second Circuit revived free speech claims for a poet who was barred from the studio of a public-access television corporation by ruling that the public access channel is a public forum.

A federal lawsuit was filed that alleges two brothers were unlawfully arrested in violation of their First Amendment rights for carrying a sign on a public sidewalk in Annapolis, Maryland.


State Court News

The Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled that state officials may shield the names of voters while union recertification elections are underway to protect voters from potential intimidation and harassment without violating the First Amendment .

A California court allowed a California bakery owner to continue to refuse to make wedding cakes for same-sex couples because it violates her religious beliefs.

“Goodfellas” actor Frank Sivero’s bid to end the “Simpsons” mob henchman character Louie was shot down by a California appeals court, which found Sivero had been sufficiently “Simpsonized” to be protected by the First Amendment.


Other News

The Georgia state senate press office sent a letter to the press pool threatening to revoke press access to reporters who “ambush” state senators for spontaneous interviews.

Duke University’s School of Law plans to open a First Amendment legal clinic offering pro bono legal help for media groups and individuals in the Southeast region to fend off attempts to suppress or inhibit free speech.


That’s it for your First Amendment Newsflash February 5-February 18, 2018. We will be taking one week off but will see you back for more First Amendment news on March 11!

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