FOIA Complaint — Public Advocate v. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

admin FOIA Law, Litigation, U. S. District Court, District of Columbia

Today we filed a complaint against the CDC for their refusal to respond to our Freedom of Information Act request for copies of records related to the CDC’s 2014 “Acting Against AIDS” campaign.

Link to Complaint
Link to Exhibit A
Link to Exhibit B
Link to Exhibit C
Link to Exhibit D
Link to Exhibit E
Link to Exhibit F
Link to Exhibit G
Link to Exhibit H

Roberts & GOA v. U.S. Justice Department

admin Administrative Law, Firearms Law, U. S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan

Today, with Kerry Morgan, Esquire of Wyandotte, Michigan, we filed suit on behalf of gun owners against the U.S. Justice Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to challenge an unlawful action of ATF affecting Michigan gun owners.  On March 3, 2020, ATF issued a determination letter that directed Michigan FFLs to refuse to accept a concealed pistol license in lieu of a NICS background check from the FBI when buying a gun.  Federal law allows the use of such a license to purchase a firearm.   Our complaint can be found here.

Coral Ridge Ministries Media v. Amazon & Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC)

admin Constitutional Law, Nonprofit Law, U. S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, Uncategorized

Today our firm filed an amicus brief in support of a complaint filed by Coral Ridge Ministries Media, which has been unfairly classified as a “hate group” by the Southern Poverty Law Center. We explain in our brief that the SPLC defames organizations like Coral Ridge Ministries by adding them to a “hate map,” which is used Read More

Reply to Virginia’s Response in Opposition filed in Virginia Supreme Court on Virginia Governor Northam’s Gun Ban EO

admin Constitutional Law, Firearms Law, Litigation, Statutory Construction, Virginia Supreme Court

After we filed our Emergency Petition for Review last night, this morning at about 9:15 am, the Solicitor General of Virginia filed his Response in Opposition.  We filed our Reply to that Opposition about 1:00 pm.  The Virginia Supreme Court issued an Order denying our Petition for Review about 6:15 pm.

Emergency Petition for Review filed Against Virginia Governor Northam’s Gun Ban EO

admin Constitutional Law, Firearms Law, Litigation, Statutory Construction, Virginia Supreme Court

About 6:00 pm this evening, we filed in the Virginia Supreme Court an Emergency Petition for Review asking the Court to enjoin Governor Northam’s Executive Order banning firearms on the grounds of the Virginia Capitol, as unauthorized by law, in violation of law (Virginia Code section 44-146.15) , and unconstitutional.  (See next entry.)

Complaint & Application for Temporary Injunction Against Virginia Governor Northam’s Gun Ban EO

admin Constitutional Law, Firearms Law, Litigation, Richmond Circuit Court, Statutory Construction

About noon on Wednesday, January 15, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency in Virginia and issued Executive Order 49,  which temporarily bans the possession or carrying of firearms in Richmond on Lobby Day (Monday, January 20).  Today, Thursday, January 16, about noon, on behalf of Gun Owners of America and Virginia Citizens Defense League, and three individuals, our firm filed a Complaint and Application in the the Circuit Court for the City of Richmond, seeking a temporary injunction against the Governor’s order.   In this case, we are working with David G. Browne, Esquire of Spiro and Browne,  in Richmond.  A hearing was held before Judge Joi Jeter Taylor from 1:30 to 2:30 pm.  Judge Taylor issued an Order denying our Application at 4:31 pm.  (This led to our filing an Emergency Petition for Review in the Virginia Supreme Court about 6:00 pm (see next entry).

National Association for Gun Rights v. Mangan

admin Constitutional Law, Election Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court supporting a petition for certiorari designed to challenge a 2015 Montana State election law.  The law regulated “electioneering communications” — borrowing a term which Congress had employed in the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 to require reporting of a narrow category of broadcast advertisements Read More

Fauquier County (Virginia) Board of Supervisors Hearing on Second Amendment Sanctuary Resolution

admin Appearances, Firearms Law

Tonight, approximately 3,000 people came out to support Fauquier County, Virginia adopting a Second Amendment Sanctuary Resolution.  Rob Olson spoke out in favor of the resolution supported by Virginia Civilian Defense League (VCDL), but against the watered down version that had been proposed.  As he advised the elected officials:  “Let’s do better than this.  Let’s grow a spine and adopt something that’s meaningful.”  Watch the video here.

Article: “Sixth Circuit Hears Debate Over Legality of Bump Stocks”

admin Appearances, Firearms Law, Press Coverage

L-R: Rob Olson and Erich Pratt.

L-R: Rob Olson and Erich Pratt.

Today, Rob Olson presented oral argument before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in our continuing litigation against ATF’s bump stock regulation issued in December 2018. The issue today before the court was the correctness of District Judge Paul Maloney’s ruling denying our motion for a preliminary injunction against the regulation. This article in CourthouseNews discusses the oral argument.

Link to article

FSC/FSDEF Comments Filed with IRS re Form 990, Schedule B, Donor Identification Rules

admin Administrative Law, Nonprofit Law

Today we filed comments with the IRS, supporting its proposed regulation to eliminate the requirement for exempt organizations, other than IRC section 501(c)(3) organizations, to identify the name and address of their largest donors on their IRS Form 990s. These comments were filed for Free Speech Coalition, Free Speech Defense and Education Fund, and eleven other organizations. We asked the IRS to expand the exemption to include section 501(c)(3) organizations as well.

Link to comments

ATF Firearms Industry Operations Manual Obtained via GOA FOIA Request

admin Firearms Law, Press Coverage

John Crump of Ammoland wrote an article about Gun Owners of America obtaining from ATF its internal “Firearms Industry Operations Manual.”   This manual allows FFLs to better prepare for inspections by ATF. The manual was obtained by GOA in a matter our firm handled   A PDF of the manual is available here.

Link to article

Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Becerra & Thomas More v. Becerra

admin Constitutional Law, Nonprofit Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we filed our fourth amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of 22 organizations and fundraisers opposing a California requirement that nonprofits surrender the names of their large donors before soliciting contributions in that state. Now, we are urging the U.S. Supreme Court to review a decision of the Ninth Circuit.This is the sixth brief we filed defending the right of nonprofits to withhold IRS Form 990 Schedules B, protecting the anonymity of their donors. In our brief, we address four issues —why such disclosure demands are unconstitutional for four reasons:  freedom of association under NAACP v. Alabama ex rel. Alabama; blanket restrictions of  charitable solicitation under Madigan v. Telemarketing Associates; breach of anonymity under Watchtower v. Village of Stratton and Talley v. California; and lastly, because in addition to retaliation by the public, government officials could retaliate against those donors funding nonprofits working to oppose government policies.

Link to brief

Duncan v. Becerra

admin Constitutional Law, Firearms Law, U. S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

Today our firm filed an amicus brief in a challenge to a California law limiting the capacity of magazines to 10 rounds.  We explain that the two-step test used by the lower federal courts undermines the U.S. Supreme Court decisions in Heller and McDonald.  And we explain that weapons useful in military service are exactly the type of weapons covered by the Second Amendment under United States v. Miller and Heller.

Link to brief

Jewel v. NSA

admin Constitutional Law, U. S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

Today our firm filed its second amicus brief in a challenge to the most sweeping Fourth Amendment violations ever committed by the U.S. government.  (Our last brief was filed over four years ago.)  This suit seeks to stop three different mass surveillance programs operated by the federal government — programs which have seized Internet (email, internet searches, etc.) and telephone communications Read More

Bump Stocks: Gun Owners of America v. Barr — Reply Brief

admin Firearms Law, Statutory Construction, U. S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit

Today we filed our reply brief in the Sixth Circuit challenge to the ATF bumpstock regulations brought by Gun Owners of America. The issue is the district court’s refusal to issue a preliminary injunction to stop the ATF from declaring bump stocks contraband, by classifying them as machine guns.

Link to brief

Remington Arms v. Soto

admin Constitutional Law, Firearms Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we filed our second amicus brief in the defense of a firearms manufacturer who was sued in Connecticut after the Sandy Hook shooting. Our prior brief was in the Connecticut Supreme Court. This brief supports the manufacturer’s effort to obtain review by the U.S. Supreme Court. Most of the plaintiffs’ theories were rejected by the Connecticut Supreme Court, but it allowed the case to proceed based on advertising that supposedly would have appealed to young males to conduct shootings. Our brief explains why the Connecticut Court erred in its creation of a huge exception to the federal Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, a statute designed specifically to protect firearms manufacturers and dealers from suits such as this one.

Link to brief

DHS v. Regents of the University of California

admin Constitutional Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we file our fourth amicus brief in support of President Trump’s authority to rescind President Obama’s unconstitutional DACA policy. Finally, the U.S. Supreme Court chose to review the lower court orders which have prevented President Trump from changing policy, and we address the issues in our merits amicus brief. We explain why the decision to end DACA was not judicially reviewable, and that DACA itself was unlawful. Our prior briefs were filed February 2, 2018 in the U.S. Supreme Court, March 14, 2018 in the Second Circuit, and December 6, 2018 in the U.S. Supreme Court.

Link to brief

Bostock v. Clayton County & Altitude Express v. Zarda

admin Statutory Construction, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we filed our third amicus brief in support of Altitude Express from a case brought by a homosexual skydiving instructor who was fired for speaking inappropriately at work about his sexual orientation. The Altitude Express case has been consolidated with a case from the Eleventh Circuit — Bostock. As in the Harris Funeral Case, we explain that Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Ac does not apply to sexual orientation.

Link to brief

Harris Funeral Homes v. EEOC

admin Statutory Construction, U. S. Supreme Court

Today we filed our third amicus brief in support of a Christian employer, Harris Funeral Homes, against a case brought by a male who demanded his employer allow him to dress like a woman. We explained why Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act could never be interpreted to apply to such claims.

Link to brief

The “Con-Con” Con: The Dangerous Proposal for States to Apply for an Article V Constitutional Convention

admin Constitutional Law, Publications

Today, Bill Olson and Herb Titus co-authored a paper explaining the serious dangers associated with the calling of an Article V Constitutional Convention. The paper addressed two false premises underlying the proposal: 1. The problem of big government is found in the text of the U.S. Constitution, which can be corrected by changing the words of the document. 2. The only remedy to the problem of Read More

Citizens United v. Department of State — Opposition & Reply

admin FOIA Law, U. S. District Court, District of Columbia

Our FOIA suit for Citizens United to obtain additional documents about the Christopher Steele briefing at the State Department concerning the Steele Dossier on October 11, 2016 continues. Today we filed our Memorandum in Opposition to the State Department’s Motion for Summary Judgment together with our Reply to the State Department’s Opposition to our Motion for Summary Judgment.
Also filed today was Exhibit A to our filing, which consists of documents recently released by the State Department on July 5, 2019.
Lastly, we filed our Statement of Genuine Issues.

Veronica Price v. City of Chicago

admin Constitutional Law, U. S. Supreme Court

Today our firm filed its second amicus brief challenging the City of Chicago’s “bubble zone” ordinance, designed to prevent pro-life sidewalk counselors from speaking to pregnant women at the last opportunity before they enter an abortion clinic. As we did in our first brief in the Seventh Circuit, we argue here that this case should be handled not as an abortion rights case, but Read More

Bump Stocks: Gun Owners of America v. Barr — Brief for Appellants

admin Firearms Law, U. S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit

Today we filed our opening brief in the Sixth Circuit case of Gun Owners of America v. Barr — challenging the district court’s refusal to issue a preliminary injunction to stop the ATF total ban on the private ownership of bump stocks.

Link to brief