Union Fees

The Seventh Circuit upheld a teacher’s class action suit seeking recovery of “fair-share fees” he made under protest to the Chicago Teachers Union before a U.S. Supreme Court decision concluded the extraction of such fees from non-union members was unconstitutional. The teacher requested the circuit court affirm the dismissal so that he can appeal to the Supreme Court.

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Democrats Challenge Pick to Replace Barrett on Seventh Circuit

President Donald Trump’s nominee to fill the Seventh Circuit seat left empty by Justice Amy Coney Barrett faced sharp criticism Wednesday from Senate Democrats who warned against filling vacancies on the federal bench during the lame-duck period.

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Absentee Ballots

The Seventh Circuit stayed an injunction that had required Indiana to count all absentee ballots received by Nov. 13, finding the state’s law requiring all ballots to be received by noon on Election Day is “rational.” The circuit court added that the Supreme Court “insists the federal judges not change electoral rules close to an election.”

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Seventh Circuit Halts Expansion of Wisconsin Absentee Voting

The Seventh Circuit on Thursday rolled back changes a Wisconsin federal judge made to the state’s general election deadlines and rules as a coronavirus precaution, delivering a win for conservatives fighting tooth and nail against any alterations to election law ahead of the Nov. 3 election.

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Seventh Circuit Examines Lifetime GPS Tracking of Sex Offenders

The Seventh Circuit on Friday weighed the intrusiveness of a Wisconsin statute that institutes lifetime GPS monitoring of certain convicted sex offenders against the necessity of preventing further offenses from that particular class of criminals, which has high rates of recidivism for crimes that are particularly heinous.

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Ministerial Employees

The First Amendment exception that prohibits enforcement of federal employment discrimination statutes against churches’ decisions to hire or fire ministerial employees does not “categorically bar all hostile environment discrimination claims” made by such employees, the Seventh Circuit ruled, finding that a gay man may pursue his sexual orientation hostile work environment claim against his former employer.

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Murder for Hire

The Seventh Circuit affirmed the grant of a habeas petition to a man who was convicted of murder for hire after telling a hitman — really an undercover police officer — that he wanted his ex-wife and her boyfriend killed. The man claims his excluded testimony about his interactions with a police informant would have demonstrated that his meeting with a hitman was a charade, and he never intended to have anyone murdered.

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