Wood v. Moss

Docket No.
Op. Below
Argument
Mar 26, 2014
Tr.Aud.
Opinion
Vote
9-0
Author
Ginsburg
Term

Holding: Two Secret Service agents who ordered that individuals protesting the policies of President George W. Bush be moved away from the outdoor area at which the president was eating, placing them further away from the president than the president’s supporters, are entitled to qualified immunity from the protesters’ lawsuit alleging viewpoint discrimination in violation of the First Amendment when there was a legitimate security rationale for the removal of the protesters.

Judgment: Reversed, 9-0, in an opinion by Justice Ginsburg on May 27, 2014.

SCOTUSblog Coverage

DateProceedings and Orders
May 15 2013Application (12A1096) to extend the time to file a petition for a writ of certiorari from May 27, 2013 to June 27, 2013, submitted to Justice Kennedy.
May 16 2013Application (12A1096) granted by Justice Kennedy extending the time to file until June 27, 2013.
Jun 11 2013Application (12A1096) to extend further the time from June 27, 2013 to July 26, 2013, submitted to Justice Kennedy.
Jun 20 2013Application (12A1096) granted by Justice Kennedy extending the time to file until July 26, 2013.
Jul 26 2013Petition for a writ of certiorari filed. (Response due August 26, 2013)
Aug 7 2013Order extending time to file response to petition to and including September 25, 2013.
Aug 12 2013Waiver of right of respondents Ron Ruecker, Eric Rodriquez, Tim R. McClain and Randie Martz to respond filed.
Sep 16 2013Order further extending time to file response to petition to and including October 25, 2013.
Oct 24 2013Brief of respondents Michael Moss, et al. in opposition filed.
Nov 12 2013DISTRIBUTED for Conference of November 26, 2013.
Nov 13 2013Reply of petitioners Tim Wood and Rob Savage filed. (Distributed)
Nov 26 2013Petition GRANTED.
Dec 13 2013Motion to dispense with printing the joint appendix filed by petitioners Tim Wood and Rob Savage.
Jan 8 2014SET FOR ARGUMENT ON Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Jan 10 2014Brief of petitioners Tim Wood and Rob Savage filed.
Jan 13 2014Motion to dispense with printing the joint appendix filed by petitioners GRANTED.
Jan 13 2014Record received from U.S.C.A. 9th Circuit. The record is electronic.
Jan 16 2014Record received from U.S.D.C. of Oregon. 1 Envelope.
Jan 17 2014Brief amici curiae of National Conference of State Legislatures, et al. filed.
Jan 17 2014Brief amicus curiae of Public Justice, P.C. in support of neither party filed.
Feb 3 2014CIRCULATED.
Feb 10 2014Brief of respondents Michael Moss, et al. filed. (Distributed)
Feb 18 2014Brief amici curiae of Professors of Civil Procedure filed. (Distributed)
Feb 18 2014Brief amicus curiae of NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc. filed. (Distributed)
Mar 12 2014Reply of petitioners Tim Wood and Rob Savage filed. (Distributed)
Mar 26 2014Argued. For petitioners: Ian H. Gershengorn, Deputy Solicitor General, Department of Justice, Washington, D. C. For respondents: Steven M. Wilker, Portland, Ore.
May 27 2014Judgment REVERSED. Ginsburg, J., delivered the opinion for a unanimous Court.
Jun 30 2014JUDGMENT ISSUED.

Issue: (1) Whether the court of appeals erred in denying qualified immunity to Secret Service agents protecting the president by evaluating the claim of viewpoint discrimination at a high level of generality and concluding that pro- and anti-Bush demonstrators needed to be positioned an equal distance from the President while he was dining on the outdoor patio and then while he was travelling by motorcade; and (2) whether respondents have adequately pleaded viewpoint discrimination in violation of the First Amendment when no factual allegations support their claim of discriminatory motive and there was an obvious security-based rationale for moving the nearby anti-Bush group and not the farther-away pro-Bush group.

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