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First Amendment

Dec 2, 2015

Federal court shoots down Illinois sheriff’s crusade against

A federal court has ruled that an Illinois sheriff violated a classifieds website’s First Amendment right to freedom of expression by pressuring credit card companies to cut ties with the website.

Nov 23, 2015

Indiana county to allow Nativity scene with Bill of Rights

An eastern Indiana county that has been at the center of months-long legal battle over a Nativity scene that has been a courthouse tradition for five decades will allow a mixture of religious and secular displays this holiday season.

Aug 17, 2015

Backpage ad site: Aider of traffickers or way to stop them?

The adult ads on are endless — written in a sort of risque code to avoid implying something illegal, yet still obvious invitations for sex, adorned with suggestive photos and videos. Many in the fight against sex trafficking loathe the website, particularly since some escorts in the ads have turned out to be minors who've been forced into the sex trade.

Jun 30, 2015

US justices take up dispute over union fees

The U.S. Supreme Court will consider limiting the power of government employee unions to collect fees from non-members in a case that labor officials say could threaten membership and further weaken union clout.

Jun 24, 2015

Dispute over union fees could return to US Supreme Court

Powerful public-sector unions are facing another high-profile legal challenge that they say could wipe away millions from their bank accounts and make it tougher for them to survive.

May 18, 2015

BENCH BLOG: Elections don’t turn judges into politicians

In a surprising decision delivered by Chief Justice John Roberts, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld state rules forbidding judicial candidates from personally asking donors for campaign money.

Mar 23, 2015

US justices struggle with free speech case over license plates

The U.S. Supreme Court struggled Monday in a dispute over a proposed Confederate battle flag license plate to balance worries about government censorship and concerns that offensive messages could, at worst, incite violence.

Dec 1, 2014

US Supreme Court considers Facebook threats case

From the violent lyrics of rap music to the crude comments of teenagers in video-game chat rooms, the U.S. Supreme Court struggled Monday over where to draw the line between free speech and illegal threats in the digital age.

Sep 8, 2014

Judge orders state not to enforce PAC limits law (UPDATE)

A federal judge just two months before Election Day has ordered that Wisconsin election officials not enforce the law limiting how much money candidates can collect from political action committees and those run by political parties and legislative campaigns.

Jul 29, 2014

Whistleblower wins at highest court, but loses pay

Edward Lane's U.S. Supreme Court victory in a landmark whistleblower case doesn't change the fact he lost his state job and more than half his income while helping convict a state legislator of getting paid for not working.

Jul 3, 2014

Appeals judge rules Facebook rant protected by First Amendment (UPDATE)

A Wisconsin appellate judge says an Arena man was within his rights when he posted profane insults toward police on Facebook.

Jun 30, 2014

Top court: Public union can’t make nonmembers pay fees (UPDATE)

The U.S. Supreme Court dealt a blow to public sector unions Monday, ruling in Harris v. Quinn that thousands of home health care workers in Illinois cannot be required to pay fees that help cover a union’s costs of collective bargaining.


Should Justice Protasiewicz recuse herself on gerrymandering cases that go before the Wisconsin Supreme Court?

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