2014 National Lawyers Convention
The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2013-14 Term included two major religion cases, Town of Greece v. Galloway and Burwell v. Hobby Lobby. In Galloway, the Court held that prayers offered by local clergy at the start of town board meetings did not violate the Establishment Clause. In Hobby Lobby, the Court held that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act required that corporations whose owners object to the HHS contraceptive mandate be exempt from it. The panel will explore, from a range of perspectives, the significance of Hobby Lobby and the religious freedom jurisprudence of the Roberts Court. Among the topics to be considered are the analysis under RFRA of the government’s compelling interest and the narrow tailoring requirements, the interplay between religious exemptions and the Establishment Clause, emerging issues at the intersection of religious freedom and anti-discrimination laws, ongoing challenges to the HHS contraceptive mandate, and the legacy of Hobby Lobby for future First Amendment and religious freedom cases.
The Federalist Society's Religious Liberties Practice Groups presented this panel on "Religious Liberty after Hobby Lobby" on Thursday, November 13, during the 2014 National Lawyers Convention.
- Ms. Kim Colby, Senior Counsel, Christian Legal Society
- Prof. William P. Marshall, William Rand Kenan, Jr. Distinguished --Professor of Law, University of North Carolina School of Law
- Prof. Robin Fretwell Wilson, Roger and Stephany Joslin Professor of Law and Director, Program in Family Law and Policy, University of Illinois College of Law
- Moderator: Hon. Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit
- Introduction: Mr. William L. Saunders, Senior Vice President and Senior Counsel, Americans United for Life and Chairman, Religious Liberties Practice Group
Mayflower Hotel Second Annual Executive Branch Review Conference
Religion has long had a special place in our society and in the Constitution. Has that place been evolving? If so, how? What does the Constitution say about the role of the federal government, and the Executive Branch in particular, in the realm of religious liberties? This panel will take up such issues as the HHS contraceptive mandate, the U.S. Solicitor General’s positions in religious freedom cases, and other statutory and regulatory matters that have come to the forefront in recent years.
A key element of the Practice Groups' Executive Branch Review project is our annual conference. This year's Executive Branch Review Conference took place on May 7th at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C.
The Contraceptive Mandate
11:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
- Mr. S. Kyle Duncan, Duncan PLLC
- Dr. John C. Eastman, Henry Salvatori Professor of Law & Community Service, Chapman University School of Law
- Prof. Martin S. Lederman, Georgetown University Law Center
- Ms. Elizabeth B. Wydra, Chief Counsel, Constitution Accountability Center
- Moderator: Mr. Robert Barnes, Supreme Court Correspondent, The Washington Post
Mayflower Hotel 2013 National Lawyers Convention
The government (federal, state, and local) offers a wide range of benefits to groups. Some benefits are monetary subsidies. Some consist of access to government property such as university classrooms and bulletin boards. Some of the most important benefits are income and property tax exemptions, which the Supreme Court has said are tantamount to subsidies. What sorts of speech-restrictive conditions may the government impose on such subsidies? May the government insist that benefited groups refrain from using the benefits for religious commentary, for electioneering and lobbying, for speaking about abortion, or for creating “indecent” or “disrespectful” art? May the government insist that benefited groups not discriminate in their choice of leaders or members? May the government insist that benefited groups affirmatively expressive certain views (such as opposition to prostitution)?
This issue has divided the Court in a wide range of cases, such as Rust v. Sullivan, Rosenberger v. University of Virginia, NEA v. Finley, Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, and, most recently, USAID v. Alliance for Open Society International. It has also come up in the news, with the IRS’s investigation of Tea Party groups that apply for tax-exempt status – such investigations are closely tied to the statutory restrictions on electioneering and lobbying by tax-exempt groups. And the issue has in recent years sometimes inverted the usual partisan divides: in Rosenberger and Christian Legal Society, for instance, it has been the conservatives who have argued for free speech restriction even when government-provided benefits are involved, and the liberals who have argued that speakers who accept government benefits must also accept the restrictions imposed on those benefits.
The Free Speech & Election Law Practice Group hosted this panel on "The First Amendment and Government Benefits" on Friday, November 15, during the 2013 National Lawyers Convention.
Free Speech: The First Amendment and Government Benefits
3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
- Prof. Lillian R. BeVier, David and Mary Harrison Distinguished Professor of Law Emeritus, University of Virginia School of Law
- Prof. David D. Cole, Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center
- Dr. John C. Eastman, Professor, Henry Salvatori Professor of Law and Community Service; Former Dean (2007-2010); Director, Center of Constitutional Jurisprudence, Chapman University School of Law
- Prof. Martin S. Lederman, Associate Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center
- Moderator: Hon. Timothy M. Tymkovich, United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit
- Introduction: Mr. Erik S. Jaffe, Sole Practitioner, Erik S. Jaffe, PC
[Watch or listen now!] 2013 National Lawyers Convention
In a variety of contexts, from the HHS preventive services mandate to same-sex marriage, differing moral visions are in increasing conflict in the public square. How will this conflict affect the American understanding of religious liberty?
The Religious Liberties Practice Group hosted this panel on "Religious Liberty & Conflicting Moral Visions" on Thursday, November 14, during the 2013 National Lawyers Convention.
Religious Liberties: Religious Liberty & Conflicting Moral Visions
12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
- Mr. Kyle Duncan, General Counsel, The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty
- Prof. William A. Galston, Ezra Zilkha Chair, Governance Studies Program, The Brookings Institution
- Prof. Robert P. George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and Director, James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions Department of Politics, Princeton
- Prof. Andrew M. Koppelman, John Paul Stevens Professor of Law, Northwestern University School of Law
- Moderator: Hon. Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain, United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
[Watch or listen now!]