Institute for Justice
The Institute for Justice brings us The Citizens United Debate, where Steve Simpson and Ilya Shapiro (arguing for the First Amendment) debated Richard Hasen and Jamin Raskin (arguing against the First Amendment) on the Citizens United decision by the Supreme Court from earlier this year that has reignited debate on campaign finance law.
Here is the first part of the debate:
Can you imagine being sentenced to 90 days in jail and forced to pay a fine for selling the fruits of your labor? That is exactly what is happening in Lake Elmo, Minnesota where elected leaders are criminalizing the selling of goods that were not grown inside the city limits.
The Institute for Justice, a great libertarian public interest law firm that regularly challenges unconstitutional regulations, is taking up the case. Check out the video below and read here to find out more.
The folks over at the Institute for Justice praise the ruling on the Second Amendment by the Supreme Court, but also take issue with the unwillingness to tackle incorporation through the Privileges or Immunities Clause:
The pivotal fifth vote was Justice Clarence Thomas, who noted that, for all the disagreement between the two groups of four Justices, “neither side argues that the meaning they attribute to the Due Process Clause was consistent with public understanding at the time of its ratification.” Justice Thomas agreed that the gun ban should be struck down, but instead proposed “a more straightforward path to this conclusion, one that is more faithful to the Fourteenth Amendment’s text and history”—namely, the 14th Amendment’s “Privileges or Immunities Clause.” That Clause states that “[n]o State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States.”
From the Institute for Justice:
Under a Dallas law enacted in 2008, businesses are prohibited from putting signs in the upper two-thirds of any window or glass door, and no more than 15 percent of any window or glass door may be covered by signs. The only way to comply with the new ordinance is by putting tiny signs at peoples feet—which is not an effective way to advertise. The law also bans signs that cover more than 25 percent of a buildings façade. Failure to take down the signs means you are at risk to be hit with a fine up to $2,000.
The law only targets commercial messages. Businesses are free to put anything except a commercial message in their windows. For example, a business could paint a giant Dallas Cowboys helmet on its window—but not advertise that it offers Cowboys merchandise for sale inside. Businesses can paint their windows black or put coolers or other items in front of them. In fact, businesses are not even required to have windows at all. What they cannot do is put messages in their windows that tell customers about the products and services offered inside.