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Amicus Briefs


An amicus brief – also known as an amicus curiae or “friend of the court brief” – is a brief filed in a court case by a person or group that is not an actual party to the lawsuit. Amicus briefs are intended to bring matters to the court’s attention that the parties involved in the case may not bring. The Goldwater Institute files amicus briefs in a wide range of cases, and many have been cited in the opinions issued by the court – further extending our nationwide impact.

  • Montana Shooting Sports Association v. Holder

    Posted on September 29, 2011 | Type: Amicus Brief

    This case does not involve a mere clash between state and federal law. It involves the federal government’s effort to quash an exercise of state sovereignty that directly serves the structural purpose of federalism in our compound republic—the protection of individual liberty guaranteed by the Bill of Rights. Such federal overreaching must be rejected if the vertical separation of powers established by the letter and spirit of our Constitution means anything.

  • Downing/Salt Pond Partners, L.P. v. State of Rhode Island, Et Al

    Posted on September 23, 2011 | Type: Amicus Brief

    Pursuant to a permit issued by the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council (CRMC), a developer built 26 of 79 planned homes and installed infrastructure between 1992 and 2007. The Rhode Island Historic Preservation and Heritage Commission (HPHC) became interested in the site and recommended withdrawal of the permit or requiring a complete archaeological data recovery project. In 2009, after informal negotiations, the developer notified the HPHC that it would resume construction absent some response from the agencies. The developer resumed construction and a stop-work order issued.

  • Colony Cove Properties v. City of Carson, CA and City of Carson Mobile-Home Park Rental Review Board

    Posted on September 14, 2011 | Type: Amicus Brief

    When state and local governments violate federal constitutional rights (e.g., First Amendment free speech), they can be sued in federal court — except when that government action violates the Fifth Amendment's protections for property rights.

  • Seven-Sky v. Holder

    Posted on May 23, 2011 | Type: Amicus Brief

    Plaintiff Seven-Sky and others mounted a facial challenge to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, which requires that every American buy health insurance or pay a tax penalty. The United States District Court for the District of Columbia granted the government’s motion to dismiss. After determining that the plaintiffs had standing and that their claims were ripe, the court concluded that the individual mandate was a valid exercise of congressional authority under the Commerce Clause.

  • Cushing v. McKee

    Posted on October 20, 2010 | Type: Amicus Brief

    The proceedings leading to the instant application are a prime example of the defiance of law, logic and evidence that can be expected to grow if the Ninth Circuit’s decision in McComish is allowed to stand. To protect the rule of law in the wake of Davis and Citizens United, and in view of this Court’s June 8, 2010 order staying the Ninth Circuit’s decision (McComish Pet. App. 81), the undersigned amicus party wholeheartedly agrees that preliminary injunctive relief should be granted to Appellants.

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