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January 18, 2018
Rutherford Institute to Request Rehearing Before Appeals Court in First Amendment Case of Street Preachers Arrested at Princeton Train Station

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. — The Rutherford Institute plans to request a rehearing before the entire Third Circuit Court of Appeals in a First Amendment case involving two s...

January 12, 2018
Rutherford Institute Asks U.S. Supreme Court to Strike Down Minn. Law Banning Political Expression on Clothing Worn at Polling Places

Challenging a Minnesota law that bans political speech on any “badge, button, shirt, or hat” worn at election polling stations, attorneys for The Rutherford Institute, Cato Institute, Reason Foundation, and The Individual Rights Foundation have asked the United States Supreme Court to declare that the clothing ban violates the First Amendment’s guarantee to freedom of speech.

January 10, 2018
U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Rein in Aggressive Knock-And-Talk Policing Practices, Fails to Hold Police Accountable for Shooting Innocent Man

WASHINGTON, D.C. — In refusing to hear the case of Young v. Borders, the U.S. Supreme Court has failed to hold police accountable for shooting and killing an innoce...

December 13, 2017
In Digital Privacy Case, Rutherford Institute Urges Supreme Court to Strictly Enforce Wiretapping Law and Safeguard Core Privacy Protections

Weighing in on a major digital privacy case before the U.S. Supreme Court, The Rutherford Institute is urging the high court to strictly enforce the nation’s federal wiretapping law and maintain core privacy protections enacted by Congress in 1968 to guard against the misuse of bugs and wiretaps by government agents.

December 06, 2017
Rutherford Institute Asks U.S. Supreme Court to Prohibit Unions From Requiring Public Employees to Support Political Activities With Which They Disagree

Arguing that the First Amendment forbids the government from dictating what citizens should say, whom they should support or with whom they should associate, The Rutherford Institute has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn existing law that allows unions to require public-sector employees to subsidize political activities undertaken by the union.

November 30, 2017
'Twelve Rules of Christmas': Rutherford Institute Issues Constitutional Guidelines for Celebrating Christmas in Public, at School or Work

As part of its annual effort to clear up much of the legal misunderstanding over the do’s and don’ts of celebrating Christmas, The Rutherford Institute has issued a Constitutional Q&A on the “Twelve Rules of Christmas.”

November 22, 2017
Rutherford Institute Asks Supreme Court to Stop Police from Carrying out Warrantless Searches of Vehicles Parked on Private Residential Property

Warning against the continuing encroachment of law enforcement on the security and privacy of the homes of citizens, The Rutherford Institute has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to prohibit police from entering private residential property and approaching a home, uninvited and without a warrant, in order to search a vehicle parked a few feet from the house.

November 17, 2017
Rutherford Institute Sues Police Over 'Broken Taillight' Traffic Stop That Resulted in Driver Being Punched, Beaten, Arrested and Hospitalized

The Rutherford Institute has filed a Fourth Amendment lawsuit on behalf of a young African-American man who, after being stopped by Louisiana police for a broken taillight, was allegedly thrown to the ground, beaten, arrested and hospitalized for severe injuries to his face and arm, all for allegedly “resisting arrest” by driving to a safe, well-lit area before stopping.

November 15, 2017
U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Review First Amendment Case Over Minnesota Ban on Expressive T-Shirts, Buttons at Polling Places

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a First Amendment case challenging a Minnesota law that bans political speech on any “badge, button, shirt, or hat” worn at election polling stations.

November 02, 2017
Rutherford Institute Challenges Police Use of License Plate Readers as Mass Surveillance Tool to Track Citizens Not Suspected of a Crime

The Rutherford Institute has asked the Virginia Supreme Court to prohibit police from using license plate readers as mass surveillance tools to track citizens whether or not they are suspected of a crime. In filing an amicus brief in Neal v. Fairfax County Police Department, Rutherford Institute attorneys argue that Fairfax County’s practice of collecting and storing license plate reader data violates a Virginia law prohibiting the government from amassing personal information about individuals, including their driving habits and location.

October 26, 2017
Rutherford Institute Denounces Justice Dept. Plan to Expand Policing for Profit Schemes, Issues Constitutional Guidance on Civil Asset Forfeiture

The Rutherford Institute has issued constitutional guidelines on the government’s excessive and controversial use of civil asset forfeiture, also referred to as “policing for profit,” which allows police to arbitrarily seize private property—cars, cash, jewelry, homes, etc.—without having to charge the owners with a crime. Once the assets have been seized, police divvy up the profits with the federal government, establishing what Rutherford Institute attorneys refer to as an “incentive-driven excuse for stealing from the citizenry.” The publication of the Institute’s guidelines coincides with a recent announcement by Attorney General Jeff Sessions that the Justice Department plans to expand law enforcement’s use of civil asset forfeiture even in states that have restricted the practice.

October 12, 2017
U.S. Supreme Court Lets Stand Lower Court Ruling That Could Endanger First Amendment Activity by Expanding 'Government Speech' Doctrine

In a move that could lead to a dangerous expansion of the “government speech” doctrine in order to limit any speech that occurs on government property, the U.S. Supreme Court has refused to review a federal appeals court ruling that places highway rest areas off limits for First Amendment activities.

September 28, 2017
Rutherford Institute Asks Eastern District Court to Hold Virginia Prison Officials Accountable to Maintaining Humane Conditions for Inmates

The Rutherford Institute, working in conjunction with the American Civil Liberties Union, has asked a federal district court to uphold a lawsuit filed on behalf of Virginia death-row inmates held in “dehumanizing” conditions of isolation. In weighing in before the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, the two civil liberties organizations argue that tactical policy changes adopted by the Virginia Department of Corrections (VDOC) in order to sidestep court-mandated legal obligations (the practice of “tactical mooting”) leave prisoners at greater risk of having harsh conditions re-imposed upon them.

September 20, 2017
Rutherford Institute Asks U.S. Supreme Court to Rein in Aggressive, Coercive, Potentially Violent Knock-and-Talk Practices by Militarized Police

Warning of the danger to the public from the increasing use of “knock and talk” tactics by police, The Rutherford Institute has asked the United States Supreme Court to rein in aggressive “knock and talk” practices, which have become thinly veiled, warrantless attempts by which citizens are coerced and intimidated into “talking” with heavily armed police who “knock” on their doors in the middle of the night.

September 14, 2017
Constitutional Attorney John W. Whitehead Speaks on ‘The State of the First Amendment on College Campuses’ at Univ. of Virginia Constitution Day Event

Constitutional attorney John W. Whitehead will be speaking on the “State of the First Amendment on College Campuses” as part of a Constitution Day event at the University of Virginia’s Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy on Thursday, September 14, 2017.

September 13, 2017
Rutherford Institute Weighs in Before Virginia State Crime Commission on the Decriminalization of Simple Marijuana Possession

The Rutherford Institute is calling on the Commonwealth of Virginia to reduce the punishment for simple possession of marijuana (less than one-half ounce) to a ticket and fine instead of a misdemeanor offense, which carries with it a criminal record and the possibility of jail time.

September 07, 2017
VICTORY: Court Upholds Rutherford Institute's Claims That Sheriffs Conducted Unconstitutional Search and Arrest Based on Anonymous Source

A federal court has rejected efforts by Texas police to dismiss a Fourth Amendment lawsuit brought by The Rutherford Institute challenging a warrantless raid, search, and arrest of a Texas homeowner based on unreliable information from an anonymous source.

August 31, 2017
Rutherford Institute Challenges Expansion of 'Government Speech' Doctrine, Disputes Claim That First Amendment Doesn't Apply to Highway Rest Areas

Warning that a dangerous expansion of the “government speech” doctrine by the courts could be used to limit any speech that occurs on government property, The Rutherford Institute has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse a lower court ruling that places highway rest areas off limits for First Amendment activities.

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