[Obama-appointee] Judge Audrey Fleissig overturns Mo. law on birth control coverage | AP
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A federal judge has struck down a Missouri law exempting moral objectors from mandatory birth control coverage because it conflicts with an insurance requirement under President Barrack Obama’s health care law.
The ruling by U.S. District Judge Audrey Fleissig cites a provision in the U.S. Constitution declaring that federal laws take precedence over contradictory state laws. But Fleissig emphasized that she was taking no position on the merits of the Obama administration policy, which requires insurers to cover contraception at no additional cost to women.
Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster did not say on Monday whether he would appeal the ruling, which was dated Thursday but not publicized.
The anti-abortion group Campaign Life Missouri distributed an email Monday denouncing the ruling as “a radical departure from America’s tradition of religious freedom” and imploring people to contact Koster’s office in support of an appeal. Some backers of Missouri’s law said the court ruling could result in churches and other religious organizations having to accept insurance policies that include contraception coverage. Continue reading
When Is a Dog Sniff in Your Car Not a Search? | Volokh
Jonathan H. Adler • July 27, 2012 11:42 am
Today the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit decided United States v. Sharp, a dog-sniff case. Here’s the court’s summary:
It is well-settled that a dog’s sniff around the exterior of a car is not a search under the Fourth Amendment. Defendant appeals the district court’s denial of his motion to suppress because a narcotics dog jumped into his car and sniffed inside the car before “alerting” to the presence of narcotics. The canine’s jump and subsequent sniff inside the vehicle was not a search in violation of the Fourth Amendment because the jump was instinctive and not the product of police encouragement. Therefore, we AFFIRM.