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Election Law

Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus - Post-Argument SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 4-29-14 featuring John Malcolm
John G. Malcolm April 29, 2014

John MalcolmOn April 22, 2014, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus. The question in this case is twofold. First, whether, to challenge a speech-suppressive law, a person whose speech is prohibited must prove that authorities would definitely and successfully prosecute him, as the Sixth Circuit holds, or whether the court should presume that a credible threat of prosecution exists absent the law falling into disuse or a firm commitment by prosecutors not to enforce the law, as seven other Circuits hold. The second question is whether the Sixth Circuit erred by holding, in direct conflict with the Eighth Circuit, that state laws prohibiting “false” political speech are not subject to pre-enforcement First Amendment review as long as the speaker maintains that his speech is true, even if others who enforce the law disagree.

To discuss the case, we have John G. Malcolm, Director, Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, The Heritage Foundation.

Is “False” Political Speech Protected? - Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus - Podcast

Criminal Law & Procedure and Free Speech & Election Law Practice Groups Podcast
John G. Malcolm April 23, 2014

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On Tuesday, April 22, 2014, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus. The Court will answer the following questions: (1) Whether, to challenge a speech-suppressive law, a party whose speech is arguably proscribed must prove that authorities would certainly and successfully prosecute him, as the Sixth Circuit holds, or should the court presume that a credible threat of prosecution exists absent desuetude or a firm commitment by prosecutors not to enforce the law, as seven other Circuits hold; and (2) whether the Sixth Circuit erred by holding, in direct conflict with the Eighth Circuit, that state laws proscribing “false” political speech are not subject to pre-enforcement First Amendment review so long as the speaker maintains that its speech is true, even if others who enforce the law manifestly disagree. Our expert attended the oral arguments and offered his impressions to a call-in audience.

Featuring:

  • John G. Malcolm, Director and Ed Gilbertson and Sherry Lindberg Gilbertson Senior Legal Fellow, Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, The Heritage Foundation

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The First Amendment and Campaign Finance: Assessing the Recently-Decided McCutcheon v. FEC Case - Podcast

Free Speech & Election Law Practice Group Podcast
Bradley A. Smith April 09, 2014

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Stating that “There is no right more basic in our democracy than the right to participate in electing our political leaders,” on April 2, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the federal biennial limit on contributions to non-candidate committees. News coverage of the decision explains that it effects only a small handful of donors, but characterizes it as important nevertheless. How sweeping is the decision, and how important might it prove to be in coming elections? Is the Court now positioned to continue to favor the First Amendment over the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act?

Featuring:

  • Prof. Bradley A. Smith, 2013-14 Judge John T. Copenhaver Visiting Endowed Chair of Law, West Virginia University College of Law and Josiah H. Blackmore II/Shirley M. Nault Designated Professor of Law, Capital University Law School and former Chairman, Federal Election Commission

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