Issue: (1) Whether the policymaker exception analysis from Elrod v. Burns and Branti v. Finkel
should apply to employee speech cases that do not
involve political patronage; and (2) whether a presumption in favor of protecting
the free speech interests of a government employee should apply in
a case not involving political patronage and where the
employee is speaking as a private citizen on a matter of
public concern and the speech does not directly criticize
her employer or any identified policy of her employer.
On Monday at 9:30 a.m. we expect orders from the October 17 Conference. We do not expect any decisions on the merits but will report promptly on any orders. The Court's next Conference is scheduled for October 31. The November sitting begins November 3.