First Amendment - Anti-SLAPP - California Constitution - grpub.net

First Amendment

Columbia Global Freedom of Expression seeks to contribute to the development of an integrated and progressive jurisprudence and understanding on freedom of expression and information around the world.  It maintains an extensive database of international case law. This is its newsletter dealing with recent developments  in the field. Community Highlights and Recent News ● A new UN Broadband Commission research report, Balancing Act: Countering Digital Disinformation While Respecting Freedom of Expression, maps the diverse range of global responses to disinformation, along with the impacts of counter-disinformation measures on the right to freedom of opinion and expression. The report documents how disinformation affects our trust in public institutions, and endangers peace and public health. It concludes with 11 ways to promote high-quality information through policy and legislative measures, technological efforts as well as media…
First Amendment Still Shines During Toughest of Times - September 25, 2020 - Guest Author Gordon Smith
Two hundred and thirty-one years ago this week, Congress passed a collection of amendments to the U.S. Constitution, 10 of which would become the Bill of Rights.  Foremost in the Bill of Rights is the First Amendment, which allows Americans to worship how they please, speak their minds openly, and have their voices heard by their government. Our Founding Fathers, in their infinite wisdom, also included in the First Amendment the right to a free press.  They understood that our democracy could not survive without the freedom to report the news without fear or favor.  The times may have changed; that principle has not. The work of our most-trusted sources of news – our local radio and TV stations, broadcast network partners, and community and national newspapers – during the most important events of the past six months have shown how essential a free press is to keeping people informed.  Yet, these historic times have also laid bare the…
Fill the Seat! - September 25, 2020 - fvanloon
Supreme Court Nomination FightJudicial Watch Will Appeal Decision on Clinton Email TestimonyJudicial Watch is Suing Illinois for Refusing to Disclose Voter Roll Data Feds Can Shut Off DC Cash Over BLM-Defund the Police Street PaintingNew York to Doctors: Hand Over Private Patient Information Supreme Court Nomination Fight We send our condolences to the family of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She had a wonderful judicial temperament that will always be remembered. President Trump now has a historic opportunity to nominate yet another constitutional conservative who will honor the Constitution and the rule of law across the full spectrum of constitutional issues. And the Senate should move quickly to work with President Trump to consider and approve a new justice who will faithfully apply the U.S. Constitution. There is no reason we cannot have a new justice by Election Day. Regarding the Supreme Court vacancy, my belief is that if Democrats can impeach in an…
This week we highlight cert petitions that ask the Supreme Court to decide whether schools may discipline students for off-campus social media posts, whether sex offender registration is punishment, and whether a deported immigrant received effective assistance of counsel, among other petitions. In the landmark 1969 case, Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District, the Supreme Court recognized that students have First Amendment rights at public schools. However, the court also allowed school officials to discipline students whose speech “would materially and substantially interfere with the requirements of appropriate discipline in the operation of the school.” In Mahanoy Area School District v. B.L., a Pennsylvania high school student sent two messages on Snapchat to 250 people that criticized the cheerleading program. After coaches removed the student from the team, the student and her parents filed suit. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd…
[Chokeholds, no-knock raids, and mass torts.] Please enjoy the latest edition of Short Circuit, a weekly feature from the Institute for Justice. Recently the Eleventh Circuit upheld Florida's system of allowing former felons to get back their right to vote, even though it makes it very hard for former felons to actually do that. Critics have rightfully decried the ruling, but, unfortunately, it's based on decades of Supreme Court precedent that many of those same critics have likely endorsed. Director of IJ's Center for Judicial Engagement Anthony Sanders tells us how supporting the extreme version of the rational basis test in some cases but not others is a bargain with Leviathan that you just can't win. Click here to read. After Congress declined to appropriate funding to Build The Wall, the president moved some money around to build some of it anyway. House of Representatives: Can't do that. D.C. Circuit: "It is a core structural protection…
“The COVID-19 pandemic is not a blank check for the Governor and other elected officials.” — U.S. District Court Judge Mark Wolf Issues Landmark 102-Page Opinion on Constitutionality of Massachusetts Eviction Moratorium; Gov. Baker Signals He Will Allow Moratorium to Expire On Oct. 17 As readers of this blog know, I, along my colleague Jordana Greenman, Esq., are lead counsel for several housing providers in a federal court challenge to the Massachusetts Eviction Moratorium in the case of Baptiste v. Kennealy, United States District Court – Massachusetts, CA 1:20-CV-11335 (MLW). For the past three months, we have been battling with the Attorney General’s Office over the constitutionality of the Moratorium and whether the court should enjoin it. After five days of hearings and thousands of pages of legal briefing, Judge Mark Wolf has issued a landmark 102-page opinion in the case. The opinion is embedded and linked to below. …

Anti-SLAPP

Anti-SLAPP appeal dismissed - September 25, 2020
The Sixth District publishes a lesson here about what to appeal and when in a published opinion:appellants did not appeal from the order granting the anti-SLAPP motions but from the judgment of dismissal that followed later, which they relied on as the appealable order. We conclude, based on the applicable law that makes an order granting a motion to strike immediately appealable (§§ 426.16, subd. (i), 904.1, subd. (a)(13)), that appellants’ appeal as to the order on the anti-SLAPP motions was untimely. We similarly conclude that the challenge to the denial of the new trial motion is not cognizable on appeal from the judgment of dismissal, because the motion for new trial was itself untimely and did not serve as a valid basis to extend time for filing of the appeal 
[A trial court said this pouring (without the target's consent) was indeed constitutionally protected; it took a 2-1 Texas Court of Appeals decision to reverse that.] The Texas Citizens Participation Act—Texas's anti-SLAPP statute—provides a special procedure for dealing with certain lawsuits: Defendants can move for prompt dismissal (and get their attorney fees paid if they win), if a lawsuit "is based on or is in response to a party's exercise of the right of free speech, right to petition, or right of association or arises from any act of that party in furtherance of the party's communication," though the case can still go forward if the plaintiff "establishes by clear and specific evidence a prima facie case for each essential element of the claim in question." How does this play out if plaintiff accuses defendant of assaulting him during the defendant's public protest? Sanchez v. Striever, decided today by the Texas…
HOUSTON – A lawsuit accusing The Kassab Law Firm of stealing a client list to pursue barratry claims will continue to go forward, thanks to a recent appellate opinion.Barratry, commonly called ambulance chasing, is the illegal solicitation of clients.Attorney Michael Pohl and his firm sued Lance Kassab, along with several other individuals and entities, for allegedly conspiring to steal his client list to pursue barratry claims against him. In response, several of the defendants, including Kassab, filed motions to dismiss under the Texas Citizens Participation Act – an anti-SLAPP measure enacted to protect free speech.When a trial court denied the motions, an appeal ensued.On Sept. 17, the First Court of Appeals affirmed, allowing Pohl’s suit against Kassab, the Baker Nicholson Law Firm and Scott Farve to proceed.   The root of the litigation goes all the way back to the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010. Pohl, a Texas attorney, was…
  Bill Chriss is truly a Renaissance man. A lifelong learner with degrees that include a Ph.D, Bill’s interests range across history, politics, law, and ethics. Bill’s recent research interest focuses on the Texas Constitution, both its origin and evolution. Bill sits down with Todd Smith and Jody Sanders and traces his career journey—from working as a trial lawyer handling his own appeals to becoming an appellate lawyer, with a stop along the way at the Texas Center for Legal Ethics. The conversation covers things attorneys should know about the Texas Constitution, its political history, ways attorneys can raise constitutional issues, changes Bill foresees in the near future, and shifting political winds in our great state. — Listen to the podcast here: Appeals, Jury Trials, and the Texas Constitution | Bill Chriss We have as our guest, Bill Chriss, from Corpus Christi. Bill, welcome to the show. Thanks very much, guys. Bill, I’ve known…
This morning, I testified before the Utah legislature’s Judiciary Interim Committee about updating Utah’s anti-SLAPP law. My testimony is below. Several members of the committee expressed concern about California’s anti-SLAPP law scope because it made it too hard for plaintiffs, so they voted not to proceed. Bummer. As the new model anti-SLAPP law gets embraced throughout the nation, I expect Utah will eventually want to join that bandwagon. __ Hello, my name is Eric Goldman, and I am a professor of law at Santa Clara University School of Law, located in California’s Silicon Valley. My research and teaching focuses on Internet law. For a decade, I have been a board member of the Public Participation Project, a group that has advocated for the creation of a federal anti-SLAPP law. Anti-SLAPP laws generally have two main features. First, the laws provide a procedural fast lane for courts to dismiss abusive lawsuits that target free speech. Second, the laws…
The Supreme Court of Canada rules on anti-SLAPP motions and articulates a test with multiple stages, shifting burdens, differing standards of proof, and the weighing of expression in the public interest.  On September 10, 2020 the Supreme Court of Canada released two SLAPP-suit (Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation) decisions, providing guidance on the ...

California Constitution

United States Privacy Laws – Part III - September 14, 2020 - Law Offices of Salar Atrizadeh
We’ve discussed how the states have passed privacy laws to protect their residents. We have also referenced the state and federal rules or regulations that are designed to promote transparency, security, accuracy, proper data collection, and accountability. The Federal Constitution has not expressly mentioned the right to privacy. However, under Article I Section 1, the California Constitution has mentioned the “inalienable right to privacy” that is applicable to the government and private individuals. The courts have confirmed this fundamental right. In White v. Davis (1975) 13 Cal.3d 757, 774, the Supreme Court analyzed the facts and confirmed the right of privacy. In Hill v. National Collegiate Athletic Association (1994) 7 Cal.4th 1, 39, the Supreme Court outlined the following framework to decide whether there is a constitutional violation: (1) there must be a legally protected privacy interest; (2) there must a reasonable expectation of privacy; and (3)…
California Supreme Court allows San Francisco tax to expand homeless services - September 11, 2020 - Peter Horton | UCLA School of Law, US
The California Supreme Court has declined to hear a challenge to Proposition C, a San Francisco ballot measure that will raise an estimated $300 million annually in business taxes to fund homeless services. Proposition C created a tax on San Francisco businesses earning more than $50 million in gross receipts and dedicated that money to preventing homelessness, through building new affordable housing as well as providing increased mental health and substance use services. After the proposition passed in 2018, it was quickly challenged by anti-tax and pro-business organizations, arguing that the ballot measure, which received 61% of the votes, had not received a 2/3 majority, as required by the California Constitution. The Supreme Court’s decision Wednesday not to hear an appeal leaves in place the June decision of the First District Court of Appeals, affirming a ruling in favor of the city’s authority to implement the tax. The appellate court was interpreting two…
Here's the amicus brief we filed last week in a case we've been following closely, Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid, No. 10-104 (cert. petition filed July 29, 2020).  That's the case in which a 2-1 Ninth Circuit panel affirmed the dismissal of a complaint for failure to plausibly state a takings claim under Twombly/Iqbal.  At issue was a regulation adopted by California's Agricultural Labor Relations Board which requires agricultural employees to open their land to labor union organizers. The regulation is framed as protecting the rights of ag employees to "access by union organizers to the premises of an agricultural employer for the purpose of meeting and talking with employees and soliciting their support." The panel majority viewed the complaint as alleging a Loretto physical invasion taking, and held the plaintiffs did not plausibly state a claim because they could not allege the invasion was permanent. The majority instead relied…
Here is the opinion: S238544 An excerpt: This is a case about how California law applies to the delicate juncture of executive power, federalism, and tribal sovereignty. Under the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA; 25 U.S.C. § 2701 et seq.), the United States Secretary of the Interior (Interior Secretary) may permit casino-style gaming on certain land taken into federal trust for an Indian tribe, so long as the Governor of the state where the land is located concurs. But nowhere in the California Constitution is the Governor granted explicit authority to concur in this cooperative-federalism scheme. We must decide whether theGovernor nonetheless has the authority to concur in the Interior Secretary’s determination to allow gaming on tribal trust land in California. What we hold is that California law empowers the Governor to concur. Briefs here.
By Diane Kindermann and Jessica Melms Stanford Vina Ranch Irrigation Co. v. State of California (2020) 50 Cal.App.5th 976 On June 18, 2020, the Third Appellate District upheld the State Water Resources Control Board’s (“SWRCB”) authority to curtail unreasonable use of pre-1914 appropriative and riparian water rights through emergency regulations. Historically, post-1914 appropriative rights were afforded less protection in shortages compared to riparian and pre-1914 water rights. On top of these principles, the reasonable use doctrine limits the right to use all water rights enjoyed or asserted in the state only to the extent that “reasonably required for beneficial use to be served.” The spring-run Chinook salmon and steelhead trout are both threatened fish under the California and federal Endangered Species Acts (“CESA” and “ESA”, respectively). Each year, some of these anadromous fish species journey from the ocean to…
Last month, the Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District of California issued a decision in Pico Neighborhood Association, et al v. City of Santa Monica (Jul. 9, 2020, No. B295935) __ Cal.App.3d __ [2020 WL 3866741] (“Pico”), finding that the City of Santa Monica’s at-large voting system did not violate the California Voting Rights Act (“CVRA”) or the Equal Protection clause of the California Constitution.  This Court of Appeal decision appears to mark the first time since California enacted the CVRA into law in 2001 that a public entity has successfully defended a challenge to its at-large election system under that law. In Pico, the plaintiffs challenged the City of Santa Monica’s at-large voting system claiming the election system discriminated against Latinx voters.  Under an at-large voting system, all voters within a public agency’s geographic boundaries vote for every member of the agency’s governing…