Tag Archives: DC Attorney General

Abbas v. Foreign Policy Group DC Circuit Panel

The DC Circuit has announced that the Abbas v. Foreign Policy Group appeal will be heard on October 20, 2014 before Circuit Judges Kavanaugh, Srinivasan, and Senior Circuit Judge Edwards. For the background facts giving rise to the case, the proceedings in the district court and the issues on appeal, see my posts here, here, here, here, and here.  For now, however, I thought I would take a quick look at prior defamation/libel/First Amendment decisions involving these judges.

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Sheldon Adelson Asserts that DC anti-SLAPP statute is Unconstitutional

In the three plus years since the DC anti-SLAPP statute first became effective, parties have argued that it violates the Home Rule, cannot be used retroactively, cannot be applied in federal court, and does not apply to motions made more than 45 days after service.  Now, in a galaxy far, far away (well, actually New York), a high-profile plaintiff is asserting a new argument: that the statute violates the Seventh Amendment.  

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Remember Dean v Maddow?

The squabble between the former rocker and well-known liberal MSNBC host spilled over into two courts.  (For all the gory details, see my prior posts here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here).

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Can District of Columbia Use Anti-SLAPP Statute Against Defamation Suit?

According to the Washington Post, attorneys representing the District of Columbia, the DC Attorney General and DC Chief Financial Officer Natwar Gandhi have informed the DC Superior Court that they intend to file an anti-SLAPP motion in response to a defamation suit brought by Eric Payne, Gandhi’s former contracting director.  The complaint, filed July 30, 2012, alleges that, on June 11, 2012, Gandhi wrote in an email to a reporter that Payne was terminated because of his “poor performance.”  It alleges that this “false, derogatory and defamatory” statement was disseminated locally, domestically and internationally by various media outlets.  It alleges …

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Lanny Davis Drops High-Profile Appeal of Denial of Anti-SLAPP Motion

With apologies to Queen, another anti-SLAPP suit has bitten the dust.  Unlike the Lehan v. Fox Television Stations case, in which the defendants’ anti-SLAPP motion was granted, however, the high-profile squabble between 3M and Lanny Davis has ended because of a settlement. 

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Texas Addresses Whether Denial of Anti-SLAPP Motion Can Be Immediately Appealed

One of the main issues to be decided in the Sherrod and 3M appeals is whether there is a right to immediate appeal from the denial of an anti-SLAPP motion.  In urging the DC Circuit to summarily affirm the district court’s decision denying the anti-SLAPP motion, Ms. Sherrod argued that the statute did not provide a right to immediate review and that the appeal should be dismissed on that basis alone.  3M made a similar argument in moving to dismiss the Davis defendants’ appeal.  In response, the DC Circuit ordered, here and here, that “the motion to dismiss be referred to …

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Davis Defendants and District of Columbia Contend Appeal Is Appropriate Under Collateral Order Doctrine

Both the Davis defendants and the District of Columbia today filed oppositions to the motion to dismiss their appeals filed by 3M earlier this month. As you might expect, both argue that the appeal is appropriate under the collateral order doctrine. The Davis defendants first directly contest 3M’s position that the decision could be reviewed after the case was over. Pointing to numerous decisions holding that anti-SLAPP statutes provide immunity from suit from meritless suits, they argue that 3M’s position, if accepted, would force defendants to shoulder the burden of meritless lawsuits through discovery and, perhaps, trial – which is exactly …

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District of Columbia Appeals 3M Decision to DC Circuit

The District of Columbia today filed its own notice of appeal of the federal district court’s decision earlier this month in 3M v. Boulter, holding that the statute is not applicable in federal court. Of course, the DC Attorney General had previously submitted a brief, arguing that the statute did not violate the Home Rule and could be applied in federal court. The federal district court did not reach the Home Rule argument because it held that the statute conflicted with Rules 12 and 56 and thus could not be applied in federal court. I would expect that the Davis …

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Breitbart Defendants Assert Judge Leon’s “Statement of Reasons”; Shows Why Appeal Should Be Entertained By DC Circuit

Its been a busy month in the Sherrod v. Breitbart case. On February 6, the Circuit issued a per curiam order asking Judge Leon to explain why he denied an anti-SLAPP motion filed by the defendants. Judge Leon complied last week, issuing a “Statement of Reasons.” Today, the Breitbart defendants responded to that filing. 

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DC Attorney General Defends Constitutionality of Anti-SLAPP Statute in Dean v. NBC

The District of Columbia today filed its brief in support of the constitutionality of the anti-SLAPP statute and in response to the attack on that legislation by the plaintiffs in the Dean v. NBC Universal case two months ago. (The District of Columbia had previously sought permission to intervene in the Dean case for the purpose of defending the statute’s constitutionality, which the Court granted on December 13). Like the brief submitted by the DC Attorney General in the 3M v. Boulter case last month, the DC Attorney General’s brief in the Dean case argues that the plaintiffs are misreading the …

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