Political & Public Law

Representative Cases

Election Law

Campaign Integrity Watchdog LLC v. Colorado Republican Party Independent Expenditure Committee, 395 P.3d 1192 (Colo. App. 2017). Won appeal vindicating right of state political parties to be treated as “persons” who may sponsor state-level super-PACs exempt from state campaign finance limits.

Successfully defended the 2016 Colorado delegation to the Republican National Convention from challenge to their election and seating at the Republican National Convention.

Constitutional Litigation 

Republican National Committee v. Pelosi, 2022 WL 4349778 (D.C. Cir. 2022). Successfully represented the Republican National Committee in challenging a congressional subpoena issued by the House Select Committee to investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol. The case raised issues of first impression regarding the Congressional subpoena power and under the First Amendment. After winning an injunction pending appeal to the D.C. Circuit, and full briefing on the merits of the appeal, the Select Committee withdrew the subpoena. The RNC is the only entity to have successfully resisted a subpoena by the Select Committee.

Stencil v. Johnson, 605 F. Supp. 3d 1109 (E.D. Wis. 2022). Successfully represented a sitting U.S. Senator in Wisconsin against a challenge under the Fourteenth Amendment’s Disqualification Clause. The case raised first-impression issues over whether there is a private right to enforce the Disqualification Clause.

Markwell v. Cooke, 482 P.3d 422 (Colo. 2021). Successfully represented a group of state legislators in state constitutional litigation challenging use of computers to “read” bills faster than any listener could understand them. Won a first-of-its kind injunction prohibiting the use of computers to speed-read bills.

Ritchie v. Polis, 467 P.3d 339 (Colo. 2020). Successfully represented plaintiff-petitioners in a challenge to Colorado Govenor Jared Polis’s Covid-19 executive order that eliminated the in-person signature gathering requirement to qualify an initiative for the Colorado ballot. In a 7-0 decision, the Colorado Supreme Court reversed a lower court and held the executive order violated the Colorado Constitution.

In re Kemp, 894 F.3d 900 (8th Cir. 2018). Successfully defended a state supreme court justice in First Amendment litigation challenging her decision to discipline a state trial court judge who had violated state judicial rules by speaking at a rally protesting the state’s death penalty while death penalty litigation was pending before him. After a federal district court refused to dismiss the case, won emergency mandamus from the Eighth Circuit preventing discovery into judicial deliberations and mandating dismissal of the action.

Administrative Law

Colorado Department of State v. Unite for Colorado (Colo. Dist. Ct., Denver Cnty., 2022CV30098). Successfully overturned an adverse campaign-finance order requiring a conservative nonprofit to register as an issue committee and disclose its donors. The appeal raised issues under the Colorado Constitution and the First Amendment.

Represented a charter school in Jefferson County challenging the authority of the Executive Director of the County Public Health Department to issue public health orders without the full board’s approval. Despite prevailing at the preliminary-injunction phase, the county health department agreed to dismiss case and dissolve the preliminary injunction while an appeal was pending. The county health department also commenced approving public health orders before the full board, and the executive director resigned.

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