Lake Erie Conservative

thoughtful discussion(s) about issue(s)

Posts Tagged ‘grant of certiorari’

… This One Could Be a Game Changer [#Labour Law case][#Friedrichs v C.T.A.]…

Posted by paulfromwloh on Monday,January 11th,2016

.. yes , this one could really be a doozy ..

.. I think that there could be as many 6 votes for this one , possibly 7 …

.. well , start at the beginning . Lori Friedrichs is a schoolteacher in California . She resigned for her union , the C.T.A . This union is , to be specific , the California Teachers Association ..

.. California is not a union – friendly state . Since the latter part of the 1970s , the reigning SCOTUS precedent , Abood v Detroit Bd of Ed , has allowed unions to collect fees [agency fees , to be exact] from non – members of the union . These people are required by law , however , to be members of the collective bargaining unit , no matter what ..

.. [h/t — Politico.com]..
.. [link] to the blog article …

.. like many who resign from the union , Friederichs endured quite a bit . Teachers who resign from their union get a large amount of professional shunning and personal abuse from their fellow teachers . Yet she endured , as did several dozen others ..

.. now SCOTUS has offered certiorari on these folks appeal from their loss at the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals . Given the rulings and precedents of recent years , such as Beck v CWA , Ferris State Teachers , and Knox v CTA, the ground could be extremely dangerous for the AFL – CIO and their member unions ..

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… Victory at the Supreme Court [#Hobby Lobby]…

Posted by paulfromwloh on Thursday,July 3rd,2014

.. yea !! ..

.. Hobby Lobby won its case .

.. for those who do not know , Hobby Lobby Stores is a chain of craft stores . They are closely – held , owned by a family [the Greens] . They encountered ObamaCrapCare , Yikes !! …

.. the ObamaCraps enacted , through the ” Essential Benefits ” package , the contraceptive mandate . It ” mandated ” that insurance policies sold in the United States contained coverage for free contraceptives , including those that could and would be considered abortion – causing drugs [abortifacients] …

.. the Greens [Hobby Lobby] and the Hahns [Conestoga Wood Products] both objected , and they sued in separate actions in separate parts of the country . Conestoga Wood is a wood products company in Lancaster , PA . Hobby Lobby Stores is a nationwide chain of hobby stores , that is headquartered in (I think) Oklahoma . The Appeals Courts reached separate judgements , and the cases were combined for purposes of this case …

.. [h/t — Cornell University Law School Library]..

.. [link] to the opinion …

.. congratulations to the Hahns and the Greens on a hard- fought victory …

.. a few highlights from the case [courtesy of Ed Whelan @ NR Bench Memos]…

Here’s a quick summary of (and a few comments on) Justice Alito’s majority opinion in Hobby Lobby:

1. For-profit corporations are persons protected under RFRA. (Pp. 16-20.)

2. Closely held for-profit corporations are capable of engaging in an exercise of religion protected by RFRA. (It “seems unlikely” that publicly traded corporations would “often” assert RFRA claims, but no need to decide whether they can.) (Pp. 20-31.)

3. The HHS mandate substantially burdens the exercise of religion by the Hahns, the Greens, and their companies. (Pp. 31-38.)

    a. Severe economic consequences.

    b. We need not reach novel claim that companies would be better off forcing their employees into the exchanges. But if we did reach the claim, we wouldn’t find it persuasive. (Pp. 32-38.)

4. We need not decide whether the HHS mandate is in furtherance of a compelling governmental interest. Even if we assume it is, the mandate flunks the least-restrictive-means test. (Pp. 38-40.)

5. The mandate flunks the least-restrictive-means test. (Pp. 39-45.)

6. The least-restrictive-means test is “exceptionally demanding.” (P. 39.)

The most straightforward way for the government to achieve its desired goal would be to pay the cost of the objected-to contraceptives itself. We see nothing in RFRA that supports the argument that the government can’t be required to create entirely new programs in order to comply with RFRA. (Pp. 41-43.)

We need not rely on the option of a new government-funded program because HHS has already demonstrated that it has at its disposal an approach that is less restrictive of religious liberty—the accommodation for religious nonprofits. “We do not decide today whether [the accommodation] complies with RFRA for purposes of all religious claims. At a minimum, however, it does not impinge on the plaintiffs’ religious belief that providing insurance coverage for the contraceptives at issue here violates their religion, and it serves HHS’s stated interests equally well.” (Emphasis added.)

 

Commentary: There will be much parsing of this passage. I think that some mandate opponents, worried that a defeat is lying in this victory, will misread this passage. What I think that Alito is saying is that the objection to the accommodation is not to “providing insurance coverage” per se but rather to providing a self-certification that has the consequences of making the certifier morally complicit in the provision of objected-to drugs and devices.* This issue is being, and will continue to be litigated, in the pending suits against the accommodation.

Indeed, it bears highlighting that the majority, in a footnote (footnote 9 on page 10) has offered an expansive reading of the relief that it afforded the Little Sisters of the Poor in the Little Sisters’ challenge to the accommodation: That order means that all “eligible organizations” must “be permitted to opt out of the contraceptive mandate by providing written notification of their objections to the Secretary of HHS, rather than to their insurance issuers or third-party administrators.” Together with the Court’s sound understanding of substantial burden, that proposition ought to provide gives high hopes for a victory to the challengers to the accommodation.

(In his brief concurrence, Justice Kennedy cites the passage above from the majority opinion in stating that the accommodation “does not impinge on the plaintiffs’ religious beliefs.” In context (given that Kennedy joins Alito’s opinion and does nothing more than cite the passage above), I think that it’s clear that he is saying nothing more than Alito is saying: only that the religious beliefs that plaintiffs have set forth in this case against providing insurance coverage wouldn’t be impinged by the accommodation.)

 

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