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Hill v. Colorado (docket #: 98-1856) (2000)  [Findlaw]

Secondary Link Hill v. Colorado  [Legal Information Institute]
Argument Date 01/19/2000
Decided 06/28/2000
Supreme Court Vote 6-3
Supreme Court Ruling First Amendment claim denied.
 
IssueA Colorado statue establishes a 100-foot zone around the entrance to any "health care facility." Within this buffer zone, people may not, without consent "knowingly approach another person within 8 feet," for the purpose of passing out literature or engaging in "oral protest, education, or counseling" on a public sidewalk. The question is whether the First and Fourteenth Amendment rights of the speaker are abridged by the protection the statute provides for the unwilling listener.
 
Case Summary & Additional Resources
 
Scheidler v. NOW, Inc. (2003)

Argument Date 12/04/2002
Decided Feb. 26, 2003
 
Issue(1) Did the 7th Circuit correctly hold, in acknowledged conflict with the 9th Circuit, that injunctive relief is available in a private civil action for treble damages brought under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO)? (2) Does the Hobbs Act, which makes it crime to obstruct, delay, or affect interstate commerce "by robbery or extortion," and which defines "extortion" as "the obtaining of property from another, with [the owner's] consent," when such consent is "induced by the wrongful use of actual or threatened force, violence, or fear," 18 U.S.C. §1951(b)(2), criminalize activities of political protesters who engage in sit-ins and demonstrations that obstruct public's access to a business's premises and interfere with the freedom of putative customers to obtain services offered there?
Majority Opinion Stevens, J. (joined by Rehnquist J., O’Connor, J., Souter, J., Ginsburg, J., Breyer, J.)
Concurring Opinion Souter, J. (joined by O’Connor, Ginsburg, J., and Breyer, J.)
Dissenting Opinion Scalia, J. (joined by Thomas, J.) & Kennedy, J.
Lower Court Colorado Supreme Court
Lower Court Ruling First Amendment claim denied.
Oral Arguments Oral Arguments  [Oyez]
Lawyers
For Petitioner
Jay Sekulow

For Respondent
Colorado Solicitor General Michael E. McLachlan argued the case on behalf of the state of Colorado.

For United States
Deputy Solicitor General Barbara D. Underwood argued the case on behalf of the United States.

Briefs
Briefs (Petititioner, Respondent & Amicus Briefs) [FindLaw]

News Stories & Commentary
AP, "Anti-abortion groups agree to drop lawsuit over protest rules" (6-2-04)

Tony Mauro Analysis
Supreme Court appears leery of Colorado's buffer-zone law

Supreme Court gives itself another chance to clarify abortion-protest limits

Opinion - Lower Court
Hill v. Thomas, 973 P.2d 1246 (Colo., 1999)
News
"Free Speech or Interference? Abortion Case is Argued," New York Times, January 20, 2000, sect. A, p. 14
"Supreme Court upholds abortion protest limits," CNN.com. June 28, 2000.

Other
O'Connor, Karen, "Abortion Protests, Abortion Rights, and the Regulation of Speech," in Gregg Ivers & Kevin McGuire, editors, CREATING CONSTITUTIONAL CHANGE: CLASHES OVER POWER & LIBERTY IN THE SUPREME COURT (2004), pp. 195-214

Commentary
Charles C. Haynes, "Court censors anti-abortion protest for sake of traffic flow" (8/8/04)

David Hudson, Overview: Abortion Protests and Buffer Zones

Jamin V. Raskin & Clark L. LeBlanc, Disfavored Speech about Favored Rights: Hill v. Colorado, the Vanishing Public Forum and the Need for an Objective Speech Discrimination Test, 51 Am. U. L. Rev. 179 (2002)

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Majority Opinion per Rehnquist
Concurring Opinion Ginsburg
Dissenting Opinion Stevens
Certiorari Granted 04/22/2002
Lower Court 7th Circuit
Lower Court Ruling In NOW v. Scheidler (2001), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit , in an opinion by Judge Diane P. Wood , denied the free expression claim on statutory (RICO) grounds.
Oral Arguments Transcript
Lawyers
For Petitioner
Fay Clayton for NOW

For Respondent
Alan Untereiner for Scheidler

Briefs
Brief

Theodore Olson, for Solicitor General
News Stories & Commentary
Medill School of Journalism (cert. grant)

Supreme Court reviews punishing of abortion foes

Supreme Court rules for abortion protesters in racketeering case

Supreme Court Opinion
National Organization for Women v. Scheidler (1994)

Panel - Lower Court
Circuit Judge Diane P. Wood joined by Circuit Judges Ilana Rovner and Walter Evans
Tony Mauro Analysis
Abortion foes hail high court ruling on clinic demonstrations

Supreme Court to bypass First Amendment concerns in abortion-protest case

Opinion - Lower Court
Organization for Women v. Scheidler (Oct. 12, 2001)

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