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Rust v. Sullivan (docket #: 89-1391) (1991)  [Findlaw]

Secondary Link Rust v. Sullivan  [Legal Information Institute]
Argument Date 10/30/1990
Decided 05/23/1991
Supreme Court Vote 5-4
Note The Rust holding was distinguished when the Court rendered its rulings in Rosenberger v. Rector of the University of Virginia (1995) and Legal Services Corp. v. Velazquez (2001)
Supreme Court Ruling First Amendment claim denied.
IssueWhether government regulations violate the First Amendment if they prohibit federally funded projects from engaging in counseling concerning referrals for activities advocating abortion as a means of family planning.
Case Summary & Additional Resources
Majority Opinion Rehnquist, C.J.
Dissenting Opinion Blackmun, J., & Stevens, J., & O'Connor, J.
Lower Court 2nd Circuit
Lower Court Ruling First Amendment claim denied.
Oral Arguments Oral Arguments  [Oyez]
For Petitioner
Laurence H. Tribe (With him on the briefs were Kathleen M. Sullivan, Rachael N. Pine, Janet Benshoof, Lynn Paltrow, Kathryn Kolbert, Steven R. Shapiro, Norman Siegel, Arthur Eisenberg, Roger K. Evans, Laurie R. Rockett & Peter J. Rubin.)

For Respondent
Kenneth Starr, Solicitor General (with him on the brief were Assistant Attorney General Gerson, Deputy Solicitor General Roberts, Jeffrey P. Minear, Anthony J. Steinmeyer, Lowell V. Sturgill, Jr. & Joel Mange)

For Amicus
American Academy of Medical Ethics by Carolyn B. Kuhl (supporting Respondent)

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists et al. by Carter G. Phillips, Ann E. Allen, Kirk B. Johnson, Laurie R. Rockett, Joel I. Klein & Jack R. Bierig (supporting Petitioner)

American Library Association et al. by Bruce J. Ennis, Jr. & David W. Ogden

American Life League, Inc., et al. by Robert L. Sassone (supporting Respondent)

American Public Health Association et al. by Larry M. Lavinsky, Charles S. Sims, Michele M. Ovesey & Nadine Taub (supporting Petitioner)

Anthony J. Celebrezze, Jr., Attorney General of Ohio, et al. by Mr. Celebrezze, pro se, Suzanne E. Mohr and Jack W. Decker, Assistant Attorneys General & Rita S. Eppler (supporting Petitioner)

Association of American Physicians and Surgeons by Clarke D. Forsythe & Kent Masterson Brown (supporting Respondent)

Association of the Bar of the City of New York by Conrad K. Harper, Janice Goodman & Diane S. Wilner (supporting Petitioner)

Catholics United for Life et al. by Thomas Patrick Monaghan, Jay Alan Sekulow, Walter M. Weber, Thomas A. Glessner, Charles E. Rice & Michael J. Laird

Clarine Nardi Riddle, Attorney General of Connecticut, Charles M. Oberly III, Attorney General of Delaware & Herbert O. Reid, Sr., Corporation Counsel for the District of Columbia (supporting Petitioner)

Commonwealth of Massachusetts et al. by David D. Cole, James M. Shannon, Attorney General of Massachusetts & Ruth A. Bourquin, Assistant Attorney General (supporting Petitioner)

Dave Frohnmayer, Attorney General of Oregon, Jim Mattox, Attorney General of Texas, Jeffrey L. Amestoy, Attorney General of Vermont & Mary Sue Terry, Attorney General of Virginia (supporting Petitioner)

Douglas B. Baily, Attorney General of Alaska & John K. Van de Kamp, Attorney General of California (supporting Petitioner)

Feminists for Life of America et al. by Edward R. Grant (supporting Respondent)

James E. Tierney, Attorney General of Maine, Hubert H. Humphrey III, Attorney General of Minnesota, Robert M. Spire, Attorney General of Nebraska & Robert J. Del Tufo, Attorney General of New Jersey (supporting Petitioner)

Knights of Columbus by Carl A. Anderson (supporting Respondent)

NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., et al. by Julius LeVonne Chambers & Charles Stephen Ralston (supporting Petitioner)

National Association of Women Lawyers et al. by James F. Fitzpatrick, L. Hope O'Keeffe & Walter Dellinger (supporting Petitioner)

National Right to Life Committee Inc. et al. by James Bopp, Jr. & Richard E. Coleson

NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund et al. by John H. Hall, Sarah E. Burns & Alison Wetherfield

Planned Parenthood Federation of America et al. by Dara Klassel, Eve W. Paul & Barbara E. Otten (supporting Petitioner)

Representative Patricia Schroeder (D-Colo.) et al. by David M. Becker (supporting Petitioner)

Rutherford Institute et al. by Wm. Charles Bundren, John W. Whitehead, A. Eric Johnston, David E. Morris, Stephen E. Hurst, Joseph P. Secola & Thomas S. Neuberger, et al (supporting Respondent)

Senator Gordon J. Humphrey et al. by James Bopp, Jr. & Richard E. Coleson (supporting Respondent)

Solicitor General (brief co-authored by John G. Roberts, Jr.)

Twenty-Two Biomedical Ethicists by Michael E. Fine & Douglas W. Smith (supporting Petitioner)

United States Catholic Conference by Mark E. Chopko & Phillip H. Harris (supporting Respondents)

Opinion - Lower Court
Sullivan v. Rust, 889 F.2d 401 (2nd Cir., 1989) (2-1 per Winter, J. with Kearse, J., dissenting in part)
Brozan, Nadine, "Some Clinics Plan to Advise And Forgo Aid; Clinics to Forgo Money and Still Counsel," New York Times, May 24, 1991, sect. A, p. 1
Greenhouse, Linda, "Clinic Aid at Issue; Free Speech Plea Denied -- The Deciding Vote Is Cast by Souter," New York Times, May 24, 199, sect. A, p. 1
Greenhouse, Linda, "Conservatively Speaking, It's An Activist Supreme Court; A New Spin On Court Activism," New York Times, May 26, sect. E, p. 1
Greenhouse, Linda, "Souter Questions a Curb on Doctors; Justices Skeptical of Federal Bar to Advice on Abortion," New York Times, October 31, 1990, sect. A, p. 1
Hilts, Philip, "Clinics Seek to Overturn Rule on Abortion Advice," May 25, 1991, New York Times, sect. A, p. 9
Honan, William, "Dr. Irving Rust, 71, Lead Plaintiff In Abortion Counseling Lawsuit," New York Times, September 8, 2001, sect. A, p. 11
Lombardi, Kate Stone, "Clinics in County React To Court's Ending Ban," New York Times, November 8, 1992, p. 573
Marcus, Ruth, "Abortion-Advice Ban Upheld For Federally Funded Clinics, Washington Post, May 24, 1991, sect. A, p. 1
Marcus, Ruth, "Ruling Could Limit Speech; Restrictions May Expand Beyond Abortion," Washington Post, May 25, 1991, sect. A, p. 1
Marcus, Ruth, "Souter's Votes May Ease Conservative Anxieties; Pieces of Justice's Philosophy Begin to Emerge in First 8 Months," Washington Post, May 28, 1991, sect. A, p. 1
Pianin, Eric & Schwartz, Maralee, "Hill Panel Votes to Block Abortion Counseling Ban; Unusual House Coalition Backs Amendment," Washington Post, June 21, 1991, sect. A, p. 4
Pianin, Eric & Schwartz, Maralee, "House Effort to Nullify Abortion Restriction; Amendment Seeks to Cut Funds for Enforcing Ban on Counseling at Federally Aided Clinics," Washington Post, June 20, 1991, sect. A, p. 19
Chemerinsky, Erwin, CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: PRINCIPLES AND POLICIES (2nd ed., 2002), sect.
Cole, David, "Beyond Unconstitutional Conditions: Charting Spheres of Neutrality in Government-Funded Speech," 67 New York University Law Review 675 (1992)
Fiss, Owen, "State Activism & State Censorship," 100 Yale Law Journal 2087 (1991)
Greene, Abner, "Government of the Good," 53 vanderbilt Law Review 1 (2000)
Heyman, Steven, "State-Supported Speech," 1999 Wisconsin Law Review 1119
Note, "Unconstitutional Conditions as 'Nonsubsidies': When is Deference Inappropriate?," 80 Georgetown Law Journal 131 (1991)
Post, Robert, "Subsidized Speech," 106 Yale Law Journal 151 (1996)
Redish, Martin & Kessler, Daryl, "Governmental Subsidies & Free Expression," 80 Minnesota Law Review 543 (1996)
Roberts, Dorothy, "Rust v. Sullivan & the Control of Knowledge," 61 George Washington Law Review 587 (1993)
Schauer, Frederick, "Principles, Institutions, and the First Amendment," 112 Harvard law Review 84 (1998)
Smolla, Rodney, SMOLLA AND NIMMER ON FREEDOM OF SPEECH (1994), sect. 10.03[2][C]
Dellinger, Walter, "Conservatives Play Doctor; The Court puts pregnant women at risk," New York Times, May 25, 1991, p. 23
Editorial, "No Mention of Abortion," Washington Post, June 3, 1991, sect. A, p. 8
Hentoff, Nat, "A Muzzle on Medicine," Washington Post, June 1, 1991," sect. A, p. 25
Lewis, Anthony, "Paying the Piper," New York Times, May 31, 1991, sect. A, p. 31
Miller, Bradley, "Big Nanny Is Watching You; Do the Right Thing, the Court's Way," Washington Post, June 2, 1991, sect. D, p. 1
Quindlen, Anna, "Rust, Roe and Reality," New York Times, July 17, 1991, sect. A, p. 21
Wicker, Tom, "The Court vs. Bush?," New York Times, June 1, 1991, p. 23
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