Short Circuit 218 | Because the Supreme Court Did Some Things It Did
A couple issues near-and-dear to many of your hearts this week: Money and Facebook. First, if you win a case against the government are you a “prevailing party” deserving of an attorneys fees award? North Carolina officials argued you’re not if you do so well that the law you’re challenging actually disappears. Luckily the Fourth Circuit shot that argument down. Alexa Gervasi explains. But meanwhile the Sixth Circuit shot down quite a lot of the First and Fourth Amendments when a police department took great vengeance upon a man with the audacity to . . . create a parody Facebook page. As Ari Bargil tells us, it’s a case demonstrating why everyone hates lawyers.
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Click here for transcript.
We discuss a couple legal immunities, one listeners will be familiar with and one that’s pretty unknown. The second is being addressed by our special guest, Aliza Shatzman. She is the co-founder of The Legal Accountability Project, a new nonprofit whose mission is to ensure that as many law clerks as possible have positive clerkship experiences while extending support and resources to those who do not. Aliza had a harrowing experience as a law clerk and found that the laws that apply to other government employees often don’t extend to those in the judicial branch. She also presents a recent case from the Fourth Circuit about a judicial branch employee who brought a number of claims to try and get around sovereign immunity—and actually succeeded on a few of them. Then Kirby Thomas West of IJ discusses a Fifth Circuit case with terrible facts, but a good outcome on the qualified immunity front.Read More
Recording in front of a live audience at the 2022 Institute for Justice’s Law Student Conference, we look at some of the best, and some of the worst, from the Fourth Circuit. First, Justin Pearson explains why a restriction on “political” advertising on the side of buses was unconstitutional even though it recognized the side of a bus is not a “public forum.” Then, Michael Bindas gives us his best sommelier (or is it wino?) impersonation and discusses a tipsy opinion allowing North Carolina to prevent out-of-state retailers from shipping wine to the state’s consumers. It’s pretty much not what the Supreme Court has said about the dormant Commerce Clause and alcohol.Read More