4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
Virginia’s Incumbent Protection Act violates the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and the district court properly enjoined Code § 24.2-509(B) in its entirety.
The fourth sentence of § 24.2-509(B)unquestionably poses a severe burden on the associational rights of the Commonwealth’s political parties. The rights protected by subsection (A) are taken away and given instead to a single individual: the incumbent. No matter what method of nomination the party members may prefer, Virginia law decrees that they must give way to the desire of the incumbent to hold a primary if that incumbent was himself selected by primary previously and is seeking re-election. This burden is manifestly severe.
The delegation of power over the party to the incumbent office holder is not narrowly tailored to meet the Commonwealth’s asserted interest. The private interest of an incumbent in winning reelection cannot, and certainly not in the manner chosen here, predominate over the associational rights of political parties.
The other provisions are, if anything, even more offensive to the First Amendment; thus, the district court properly enjoined the entire statute.
U.S. District Court – Virginia Eastern
The court awarded the plaintiff $9,953 in attorneys’ fees and costs connected to its motions for sanctions and contempt, pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37. Counsel reasonably spent seven hours on drafting and arguing plaintiff’s motion for contempt and 15 hours on the motion for sanctions, with respective partner/associate hourly rates of $570/370. The court declined to award fees for counsel correspondence, document review, and other tasks tangential to the motions.
Motion for attorneys’ fees granted.
ACP has been unable to reach an agreement with the owners on the amount of compensation for the Easements, and they have not responded to ACP’s condemnation complaints. After a finding of default judgment and consideration of ACP’s evidence as to just compensation, the court determined the compensation for each party that must precede ACP’s immediate possession under eminent domain.
Categories: Daily Dockets