The Supreme Court will inevitably decide to what extent the Religious Freedom Restoration Act protects religiously affiliated employers from providing insurance coverage for contraceptive services, as is generally required under the Affordable Care Act. But in the meantime, the Seventh Circuit has entered the discussion by affirming the denial of the University of Notre Dame’s motion for a preliminary injunction in University of Notre Dame v. Sebelius (No. 13-3853).
A pair of recent decisions explain what a defendant must have done in a forum state to be properly haled into court there.
Last week Wisconsin Appellate Law contributor Kellen Kasper wrote about the Seventh Circuit’s recent decision in Michael Jordan v. Jewel Food Stores, Inc., No. 12-1992, and its discussion of what is and what is not commercial speech. You can find the post here. This week Kellen and Colin O’Keefe of LXBN TV discussed the case further in a video interview. LXBN TV has posted the video on its website here.
When and how the First Amendment applies is normally a complicated question. In a case decided earlier this week, Michael Jordan v. Jewel Food Stores, Inc., No. 12-1992, the parties teamed up to present an issue on commercial speech for the Seventh Circuit.
The power of an appellate court in the federal system to stay the orders of lower courts or to enjoin conduct that lower courts have refused to enjoin, so as to preserve the appellate court’s jurisdiction to review those orders on ultimate appeal, is clearly established yet infrequently invoked. In addition to other potential sources, the power derives from the All Writs Act, 28 U.S.C. § 1651, which gives all federal courts the authority to “issue all writs necessary or appropriate in aid of their respective jurisdictions.”
Recently, attention was given to this power when the Supreme Court granted an injunction to the Little Sisters of the Poor. The Sisters had filed suit against the Secretary of Health and Human Services, seeking a determination that the Government cannot compel them to offer contraceptive insurance coverage to employees of their hospitals, as is generally required under the Affordable Care Act. When the district court in Denver denied the Sisters a preliminary injunction, they sought an injunction from the Tenth Circuit, which denied it (Appeal No. 13-1540, Dec. 31, 2013). But, on further application to the Supreme Court, first Justice Sotomayor and then the entire Court granted the requested relief. (No. 13A691, Jan. 24, 2014).
On February 7, 2014, the Seventh Circuit used this same power to stay orders of the bankruptcy court in Chicago, after both the bankruptcy judge and the district judge assigned to the appeal of the orders had denied stays pending appeal. In re A&F Enterprises, Inc., II (No 13-3192).