Will #SCOTUS Hear Renzi “Speech or Debate” Case, Impacting Federal Case of Congressional Corruption, Next Term?

UPDATE: The Court has listed this case for its 6/25 conference, meaning we could know by end of term whether it will take this case.

The Court may not decide what to do with this case before the end of this term, but Renzi v. U.S. presents a meaty Speech or Debate clause issue, and the amicus brief of Stanley Brand et al. makes a compelling argument for the Court to take the case. Here is the question presented:

(1) Whether legislative fact-finding by an individual Member of Congress is a legislative act protected by the Speech or Debate Clause; (2) whether a Member of Congress’ official actions to develop, evaluate, and draft legislation that are undertaken prior to the formal introduction of a bill are legislative acts protected by the Speech or Debate Clause; and (3) whether a Member of Congress can waive the protections of the Speech or Debate Clause only by explicitly and unequivocally renouncing them.

At stake is how much the Speech or Debate clause limits prosecutions of members of Congress for corrupt dealings by limiting proof of corruption based on legislative acts.

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