Nightly Brief

Your Tuesday night briefing from the staff of Courthouse News

Top CNS stories for today including a wildfire fanned by strong winds in Southern California growing to over 45,000 acres Tuesday, prompting residents of the coastal city of Ventura to flee as the fire burned into the city limits; the U.S. Supreme Court justices struggled Tuesday to find a balance that would protect free speech without opening the door for widespread discrimination in the high-profile case of a Christian baker who refused to design a wedding cake for a gay couple; the Fifth Circuit hears attorneys for and against Texas’s controversial voting law argue whether the law’s requirements are discriminatory; the European Court of Human Rights ruled two Danish journalists found liable for defaming a cancer hospital in a TV program were given a fair shake by Denmark’s court system and the verdict against them was justified, and more.

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In this photo provided by the Ventura County Fire Department, firefighters work to put out a blaze burning homes early Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017, in Ventura, Calif. (Ryan Cullom/Ventura County Fire Department via AP)

1.) In National news, a wildfire fanned by strong winds in Southern California grew to over 45,000 acres Tuesday, prompting residents of the coastal city of Ventura to flee as the fire burned into the city limits.

A depiction of the Nativity of Jesus with a Christmas tree backdrop.

2.) A federal judge heard oral arguments Tuesday from the Archdiocese of Washington about whether the court should force the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority to run its Christmas-themed advertisements on public buses.

Lydia Macy, 17, left, and Mira Gottlieb, 16, both of Berkeley, Calif., rally outside of the Supreme Court which is hearing the ‘Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission’ today, Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

3.) Considering the case of a Christian baker who refused to design a wedding cake for a gay couple, the U.S. Supreme Court justices struggled Tuesday to find a balance that would protect free speech without opening the door for widespread discrimination.

Fifth Circuit hears arguments on Texas Voter ID Law. (File Photo/The Associated Press)

4.) Exchanges grew heated before a three-judge panel of the Fifth Circuit on Tuesday as attorneys for and against Texas’s controversial voting law argued whether the law’s requirements are discriminatory.

Reza Zarrab, a 34-year-old gold trader who was charged in the U.S. for evading sanctions on Iran, is pictured in this Dec. 17, 2013, photo surrounded by the media at a courthouse in Istanbul. (Depo Photos via AP)
5.) In Regional news, after implicating Turkey’s president and ministers in billions in illicit transactions from a New York courtroom, gold trader Reza Zarrab denied on Tuesday being caught in a similar scheme involving $15 million in a car stopped at the Turkish-Russian border.
The Colorado River at Horseshoe Bend, Arizona, a few miles below Glen Canyon Dam.

6.) The gushing voice of the Colorado River will not be heard in court any time in the near future, after a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit Monday aimed at establishing personhood and constitutional rights for the ecosystem.

7.) From the world of Science comes word that the the International Space teems with more than 12,000 different species of bacteria – and that’s a good thing.

Danmarks Radio via Wikipedia.

8.) In International news, two Danish journalists found liable for defaming a cancer hospital in a TV program were given a fair shake by Denmark’s court system and the verdict against them was justified, the European Court of Human Rights ruled Tuesday.

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