Gosar, Biggs and Finchem Respond to Lawsuit from ‘Random Members of the Public’ Trying to Remove Them from Ballot for ‘Insurrection’

An organization calling itself “Free Speech for People” filed lawsuits against three prominent Arizona Republican officials, asserting that they are unqualified to hold office due to their connections to the Jan. 6, 2021 protest at the U.S. Capitol. The lawsuits aim to stop Rep. Paul Gosar (R-04-Ariz.) and Rep. Andy Biggs (R-03-Ariz.) from running for reelection, and State Rep. Mark Finchem (R-Oro Valley) from running for Arizona Secretary of State, claiming the three engaged in “insurrection” which is prohibited by the Fourteenth Amendment. 

Jack Wilenchik, the attorney for Finchem, told The Arizona Sun Times, “The lawsuit is long on publicity but short on law. No convictions or congressional authority for suit.” He told Capitol Media, “We don’t allow random members of the public to accuse politicians of a crime and remove them from office.” He explained how it would open the floodgates for anyone to try and remove any elected official they disagreed with, from Donald Trump to Hillary Clinton.

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Proposal Would Let Connecticut Agencies Sue Employers and Bestow Proceeds on Unions

Michael Winkler

A bill in the Connecticut House of Representatives would allow the state to effectively nullify worker-employer agreements designed to prevent lawsuits and let state officials bestow some monetary awards on unions.

The legislation, sponsored by State Representative Michael Winkler (D-Vernon), would evade what it refers to as “forced arbitration agreements” and “allow employees to sue employers on behalf of the state after having waived their personal rights to sue.” 

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Missouri AG Sues 36 School Districts with Mask Requirements, But Not His Own District

Missouri Republican Attorney General Eric Schmitt completed on Friday a promise made earlier this week by filing lawsuits against 36 public school districts for requiring masks.

“Mask mandates in schools are illegal, they simply don’t work, and they contribute to alarming and negative psychological impacts on our children,” Schmitt, a candidate for the seat of retiring Republican U.S. Senator Roy Blunt, said in a statement announcing the lawsuits. “My Office has been on the frontlines of the fight to end the forced masking of children all day in school, and today we took concrete legal action toward that end. Parents and families, not bureaucrats, should have the power to decide what’s best for their children. With this litigation, we’re seeking to return that power back to parents and families, where it belongs.”

Earlier this week, leaders of two Missouri public school district collaboratives told The Center Square that attorneys for many school boards believe two Missouri statutes require districts to create and enforce policies to ensure the health and safety of students. Schmitt stated a November Cole County Circuit Court ruling, now being appealed by St. Louis and Jackson Counties at the Missouri Court of Appeals, prevents school districts from enforcing any public health orders. Schmitt set up an email box through his office in December and received 11,000 messages and photographs from people witnessing mask requirements in public schools.

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6th Circuit Takes Up Case of Nashville Homeowners Suing the City

It is now up to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals to decide whether Nashville is violating the constitutional rights of homeowners by forcing them to pay for sidewalks in exchange for building permits. The 6th Circuit and other U.S. circuit courts are the second highest courts in the federal judicial system.

Nashville citizens Jason Mayes and Jim Knight have been engaged in an ongoing lawsuit with the city.

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Missouri Governor Attacks Journalist’s Mask Mandate Reporting, Democrats Push Back

Mike Parson

Democrats used the word “fascism” to describe Missouri Republican Gov. Mike Parson’s criticism of a journalist for his story on research conducted by the state health department on mask mandates.

“He’s attacking the press again for doing their job,” state Rep. Peter Merideth, D-St. Louis, told The Center Square. “This is getting to a point where it’s beyond concerning. When the press points out something your administration is doing wrong, he turns around and attacks them and says they are criminals or liars. It’s a dangerous, dangerous road he’s going down.”

The Missouri Independent reported on Wednesday a freedom of information request found Parson’s office requested in November research from the Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) on the effectiveness of masks in St. Louis, St. Louis County, Kansas City and Jackson County. Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt filed lawsuits earlier this year against the municipalities because of their mask mandates.

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Phoenix City Councilman Sal DiCiccio Demands Vote on City of Phoenix Vaccine Mandate for Employees

Phoenix City Councilman Sal DiCiccio is requesting a meeting and vote on the City of Phoenix’s new COVID-19 vaccine mandate. In a letter sent to the mayor and other members of the city council on November 22, he expressed concerns over public safety, employee retention, and whether the Biden’s administration mandate even applies.

“This decision will compromise vital citywide services to our residents, including public safety, which this Council has been aware of the alarming crime data and how the city is struggling to hire and retain personnel,” he wrote. “A more thorough determination needs to be made on whether, under federal law, the City of Phoenix and its 13,000 employees are considered ‘federal contractors’ for the purposes of this mandate,” he wrote.

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Lawsuits Challenging Biden’s Vaccine Mandates Mount, Likely Heading to U.S. Supreme Court

Multiple lawsuits have been filed against the Biden administration over three different vaccine mandates targeting private employees, federal employees and healthcare workers serving Medicare and Medicaid patients.

But lawsuits filed by 27 states over the private sector mandate is setting the stage for the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in because they were filed directly in five federal courts of appeals.

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Arizona Rep. Shawnna Bolick Demands Meeting with Mayo Clinic to Discuss Its Mandatory Vaccine Policy

Shawnna Bolick

Private employers around the country are implementing COVID-19 vaccine mandates, some in response to the mandate implemented by President Joe Biden on businesses with 100 or more employees through the Occupational and Safety Health Act (OSHA), and Arizona Rep. Shawnna Bolick (R-Phoenix) is pushing back. Bolick sent a letter to Mayo Clinic in Phoenix demanding a meeting to discuss its vaccine mandate, stating that Biden’s OSHA mandate is unconstitutional and pointing out various reasons why Mayo should reconsider its policy. Bolick said that she has received dozens of emails from Mayo employees about it, including remote workers who work from home.

“During the height of the pandemic in 2020, these same health care heroes worked tirelessly for Mayo to care for the sick knowing they were potentially putting their own health and family’s health at risk,” she wrote. “Yet, just a year later, Mayo appears ready to show them the door considering the Biden/Harris administration’s lawless vaccine mandate.”

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Texas Police Refused Requests to Escort Biden Campaign Bus Bothered by Trump Supporters

Transcripts of 911 calls last year from the San Marcos, Texas, police department show officials turned down multiple requests for assistance from a 2020 Biden campaign bus that was being harassed on the road by pro-Trump vehicles.

Individuals inside the bus at the time of the incident have filed suit against the police and the transcripts are now evidence in the case.

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Lyft’s Safety Report Shows Thousands of Sexual Assaults over Three Years

Man driving a car with GPS set up on dashboard

Lyft reported 1,807 sexual assaults in 2019 in its first-ever safety report, released Thursday. The release mentioned that in 2019 the company received 156 reports of rape and 114 reports of attempted rape.

The rideshare company’s release listed categories of sexual assault ranging from “non-consensual kissing of a non-sexual body part” to “non-consensual sexual penetration.” Reports of all five categories of sexual assault included in the release increased from 2018 to 2019.

From 2017 to 2019, rape was reported in about one in 5 million Lyft rides, according to the release. There were 4,158 total reports of sexual assault in Lyft rides during those years.

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Washington Governor’s Boast He’s ‘Only’ Person Saving Lives from COVID-19 Triggers Backlash

Jay Inslee

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee said he singlehandedly is saving lives with his powers as the state’s top executive.

In an interview with TVW’s Mike McClanahan, Inslee gave an in-depth look into his perspective when it comes to navigating the COVID-19 pandemic.

The TV host questioned Inslee, well into his second year of governing by emergency declarations, about dozens of legal challenges to his executive authority.

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Commentary: Critical Race Theory Is About to Face Its Day(s) in Court

New York State Education Building, Albany, New York

As recently as last summer, few people outside academia had heard of critical race theory, whose central claim is that racism, not liberty, is the founding value and guiding vision of American society. Then, President Trump issued an executive order last September banning the teaching of this “malign ideology” to federal employees and federal contractors.

Trump’s ban was blocked by a federal judge in December and immediately revoked by Joe Biden upon occupying the White House in January. Since then, federal agencies and federal contractors have resumed staff training on unconscious bias, microaggressions, systemic racism and white privilege – some of the most common but also most disputed concepts associated with the four-decade-old academic theory.

Now critical race theory is about to face a major real-world test: a spate of lawsuits alleging that it encourages discrimination and other illegal policies targeting whites, males and Christians. But unlike Trump’s executive order, which ran into First Amendment problems by prohibiting controversial speech, the lawsuits name specific policies and practices that allegedly discriminate, harass, blame and humiliate people based on their race.

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Trump Campaign Updates Press on Legal Wins in Pennsylvania

The Trump campaign hosted a surrogate briefing call Thursday with updates on litigation, mostly concerning Pennsylvania. As in the previous call, the speakers reiterated that these legal proceedings take time to form and execute.

Speakers included Director of Battleground Strategy Nick Trainer, Director of Communications Tim Murtaugh, Deputy Campaign Manager Justin Clark, and Campaign Counsel Matt Morgan.

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Coalition Files Lawsuits to Stop Gov. Whitmer From Silencing Free Speech in Elections, Secretary of State Benson From Undermining Absentee Ballot Integrity

A coalition filed two lawsuits in Michigan on Monday, a federal case against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer for allegedly silencing political speech, and a state suit against Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson for reportedly circumventing state law protecting the right of Michiganders to have their vote properly counted.

The lawsuits were announced on a new website launched by the coalition: Got Freedom? The website is available here.

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Gibson’s Bakery Cross-Appeal Brief Seeks Original $33 Million in Punitive Damages from Oberlin College

Gibson’s Bakery filed a cross-appeal brief Monday after Oberlin College filed its appeals brief last week seeking to overturn a trial court’s decision which made the college pay the bakery $25 million in damages.

The damages relate to Oberlin College making defamatory statements about the bakery after three minority students plead guilty to shoplifting. After these three students plead guilty, Oberlin College students not involved in the case accused Gibson’s Bakery of racial profiling, held protests outside the bakery, and said the store had “a long account of racial profiling and discrimination.”

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Buckeye Institute Supports Businesses Being Immune to COVID-19 Lawsuits

The Buckeye Institute submitted written testimony Wednesday to the Ohio Senate Judiciary Committee on the policies of Senate Bill 308, which would provide businesses and workers with immunity from COVID-19 related lawsuits.

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JC Bowman Commentary: The Intent and Spirit of Collaborative Conferencing

Tennessee Star

Are we striving toward achievement of the original objective of the PECCA law?  It is clear, a course adjustment may be in order.  Eliminating needless lawsuits, staying focused on the purpose, including more teachers in the process, and having impartial training moving forward will better establish a peaceful, stable employer-employee relationship. Who could oppose those common-sense changes? 

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Steve Gill Commentary: T.E.A. Sticking It to Teachers and Taxpayers with Needless Lawsuits

By Steve Gill   The Tennessee Education Association (TEA) often touts their legal prowess in order to justify the annual dues they extract from their union membership. To prove their claim they seem intent on creating lots of litigation through misuse of the 2011 Professional Educators Collaborative Conferencing Act. That…

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