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US Legal News Round Up for Saturday, 9 June 2018

[JURIST] Here's the domestic legal news we covered this week:

Prosecutors added new obstruction of justice charges [superseding indictment, PDF] Friday against President Donald Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort, his third indictment since Special Counsel Robert Mueller was appointed to probe into possible Russian influence in US political affairs.
The Trump administration said Thursday that it will not defend portions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in a challenge by 20 states.

The administration filed a response [memorandum, PDF] Thursday to the complaint along with a letter [text] from Attorney General Jeff Sessions [profile] agreeing with the plaintiffs and calling for a declaratory judgment by the court to rule that the individual mandate unconstitutional.

The 20 states filed [JURIST report] their lawsuit in February, relying on the Supreme Court precedent in NFIB v.

Two transgender women represented by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) won [opinion] a challenge Wednesday against Iowa's Department of Human Services in the Iowa District Court for Polk County [official website] over its ban on Medicaid coverage for transition-related surgeries.
The Arizona Court of Appeals on Tuesday upheld [opinion, PDF] a Phoenix anti-discrimination law that makes it illegal for businesses to discriminate against people because of their sexual orientation.
In a judgment [text, pdf] Wednesday in the United States District Court for the Southern District of California [official website], Judge Dana Sabraw said that Attorney General Jeff Sessions' "zero tolerance" immigration policy in which the government has been separating minor children from their parents may violate due process.
Judge Michael Baylson, of the US District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania [official website] ruled [opinion, PDF] Wednesday that Philadelphia has the right to maintain its status as a sanctuary city while still receiving federal funding.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) [advocacy website] and other immigration advocacy groups filed suit [complaint] against the US Department of Commerce [official website] and the Bureau of the Census [official website] Wednesday, challenging the inclusion of a citizenship question in the 2020 Census.
San Juan Superior Court judge Lauracelis Roques Arroyo ordered [text, PDF, in Spanish] the Puerto Rican government to release Puerto Rico's death toll since Hurricane Maria last September.
UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights Phillip Alston [official website] on Monday accused [report, PDF] the US of criminalizing being poor [press release].

The report accuses the US of criminalizing being homeless through laws that ban sleeping outside, panhandling and public urination.

In a press briefing [text] Tuesday, Ravina Shamdasani, spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, called on the US to halt its recently mandated practice of detaining and separating those immigrating illegally, including those with children, known as the "zero tolerance policy" recently put in place along the US southern border.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced last month [NPR report] a zero tolerance policy against illegal immigration, including the separation of children and parents or guardians for prosecution.

Shamdasani said that family separation as a deterrent runs counter to human rights standards and principles, and is of great concern that in the US migration control appears to have been prioritized over the effective care and protection of migrant children.

"The practice of separating families amounts to arbitrary and unlawful interference in family life," Shamdasani said.

A three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit [official website] heard [argument, MP3] oral arguments on Monday concerning Texas's attempted defunding of Planned Parenthood [advocacy website].
In a new motion [text, PDF] in the US District Court for the District of Columbia [official website] Monday, Special Counsel Robert Mueller [official website] accused Paul Manafort of using an encrypted messaging application to tamper with a witness.

According to the motion, Manafort, former chairman of President Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign, and a longtime associate identified as "Person A" repeatedly sent these texts to Persons D1 and D2 "in an effort to secure materially false testimony concerning the activities of the Hapsburg group."

"The evidence ...

Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson [official website] filed lawsuits on Monday against Google and Facebook [complaints, PDF] for failing to disclose information about who purchased political ads that were displayed on their platforms.
The US Supreme Court [official wWebsite] delivered two rulings on Monday, in Hughes v.
The US Supreme Court on Monday vacated [opinion, PDF] a decision [JURIST report] that allowed undocumented immigrant "Jane Doe" to seek an abortion.
The US Supreme Court held [opinion, PDF] unanimously Monday in Lamar, Archer & Cofrin, LLP v.
The US Supreme Court [official website] handed a narrow victory Monday to a Colorado baker who had refused to bake a wedding cake for a same-sex couple citing his religious beliefs.

The court ruled [opinion, PDF] in Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd.

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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