Thoughts About the Supreme Court’s Recently Granted False Speech Case

I’ve now had a chance to read the petition, opposition, and reply in Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus.  I believe this case is about ripeness, not the merits of Ohio’s false speech law.

I expect the Court to reverse the Sixth Circuit, perhaps unanimously, and I think that’s the right result. Getting a probable cause determination against someone at the Ohio Elections Commission is a real injury which has serious political consequences.

I expect that the Supreme Court will not reach the merits of the constitutionality of Ohio’s false speech law, either on its face or as applied to the Susan B. Anthony group. That would be left to the lower courts with a possible return trip to the Supreme Court in the future.

My earlier post on the case is here, and my substantive take on false campaign speech laws after US v. Alvarez in A Constitutional Right to Lie in Campaigns and Elections?

[This post has been updated.]

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