April 26, 2006
James Bopp, Jr.
Phone: 812-232-2434; Fax firstname.lastname@example.org
Hearing Held on the Christian Civic League’s Motion
for Preliminary Injunction
On April 24, a three-judge panel consisting of Judith W. Rogers of the
United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia and Louis F.
Oberdorfer and Colleen Kollar-Kotelly of the D.C. District Court, heard
arguments on the Christian Civic League of Maine’s (“CCL”) motion for
preliminary injunction from James Bopp, Jr., General Counsel for the James
Madison Center for Free Speech, and attorneys for the FEC and several
Congressmen who intervened, If granted, the injunction would allow CCL to
broadcast a grassroots lobbying advertisement in support of the federal Marriage
Protection Amendment before a Senate vote on the measure in early June.
James Bopp, arguing for the injunction, emphasized the First Amendment’s
protection of the right to lobby legislators on upcoming votes and the Supreme
Court’s recognition in McConnell v. FEC, 540 U.S. 93 (2003) that applying the
electioneering communication prohibition to such grassroots lobbying might be
The FEC and intervenors’ attorneys argued that the Supreme Court
unequivocally answered the question of CCL’s ad in McConnell, and argued for the
need for a “bright line rule” that encompassed the ad that CCL wishes to run.
“If there were ever any questions about whether McConnell approved of
prohibiting grassroots lobbying during the blackout period, they were answered
in Wisconsin Right to Life, when the Supreme Court vacated the district court’s
holding and remanded the case,” says Bopp. “The issue now is the parameters of
the grassroots lobbying exception to the electioneering communication
prohibition, and this court seemed to recognize that.”
James Bopp, Jr. has a national campaign finance and election law practice.
He is General Counsel for the James Madison Center for Free Speech.
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