January 4, 2018
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Roy Moore, the failed Republican Alabama Senate candidate and a former judge, is being sued by a woman who said he touched her sexually when she was 14 and he was in his early 30s.

Leigh Corfman filed a defamation lawsuit in Montgomery County Circuit Court on Thursday, and Moore's campaign is also listed as a defendant, AL.com reports. The suit says Moore and his campaign committee "have defamed Ms. Corfman, repeatedly and in all forms of media, calling her a liar and questioning her motivation for publicly disclosing that Mr. Moore sexually abused her in 1979 when she was a 14-year-old high school freshman and he was a 32-year-old assistant district attorney."

In November, Corfman told The Washington Post about her encounter with Moore. Several other women later came forward and also accused Moore of sexual misconduct; he denied all of the allegations. Corfman's lawsuit calls for the defendants to retract all defamatory statements made against Corfman, apologize publicly for the statements, and refrain from making additional defamatory comments. Catherine Garcia

December 23, 2017
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A federal appeals court on Friday became the second court this week to rule against the Trump administration's plan to stop transgender people from joining the military beginning on Jan. 1, 2018.

Both courts rejected the administration's request to override a previous court order to stay Trump's transgender recruitment policy. It must be remembered, Friday's decision said, that all transgender recruits "seek during this litigation is to serve their nation with honor and dignity, volunteering to face extreme hardships, to endure lengthy deployments and separation from family and friends, and to willingly make the ultimate sacrifice of their lives if necessary to protect the nation, the people of the United States, and the Constitution against all who would attack them."

The ruling also said the White House has "not shown a strong likelihood that they will succeed on the merits of their challenge." The Jan. 1 deadline was already a delay from the Obama administration's July 1 deadline for the military to begin accepting openly transgender recruits. The Trump administration argues neither deadline will permit the military to make necessary preparations for the change. Bonnie Kristian

December 4, 2017

Hours after President Trump announced Monday he will shrink the size of two national monuments in Utah, outdoor retailer Patagonia said it will sue to try to stop him.

"Americans have overwhelmingly spoken out against the Trump administration's unprecedented attempt to shut down our national monuments," Patagonia President and CEO Rose Marcario said in a statement. "We've fought to protect these places since we were founded and now we'll continue that fight in the courts."

The homepage of the company's website now reads, "The President Stole Your Land," and calls Trump's plan to reduce the size of Bears Ears National Monument by 85 percent and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument by 50 percent an "illegal move" and "the largest elimination of protected land in American history." Several other groups, including Friends of Cedar Mesa and Archaeology Southwest will join Patagonia in the lawsuit. Their suit will be filed after the Inter Tribal Coalition goes forward with a lawsuit of its own, AdAge reports. Catherine Garcia

November 27, 2017
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Late Sunday, one of two officials who will show up on Monday to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed suit, asking a federal court to block the other claimant. The fight over short-term control of the top U.S. consumer financial watchdog began Friday, when CFPB director Richard Cordray resigned and appointed his chief of staff, Leandra English, deputy director and thus, under the Dodd-Frank financial reform law, acting director. President Trump then appointed his White House budget director, Mick Mulvaney, acting director, citing a more general law, the Federal Vacancies Reform Act.

English filed suit in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., asking for a temporary restraining order and recognition of her claim to be "rightful acting director." Trump's "purported or intended appointment of defendant Mulvaney as acting director of the CFPB is unlawful," English's suit argues. "The president's attempt to appoint a still-serving White House staffer to displace the acting head of an independent agency is contrary to the overall statutory design and independence of the bureau."

Congress created the CFPB with an unusual amount of autonomy in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, to insulate it from political pressure. Trump will nominate a director soon, and that director, once approved by the Senate, is expected to scale back the CFPB's scope and regulatory activity. Under Cordray, the CFPB has gone after banks and abusive debt collection agencies, winning debt cancellation for 29 million Americans and nearly $12 billion in refunds. Banks have bristled and Republicans accused the bureau of overreach, and Mulvaney has called the CFPB a "joke" and urged its dissolution. "Wall Street hates it like the devil hates holy water," Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said on CNN Sunday.

The Justice Department Office of Legal Counsel and CFPB general counsel Mary E. McLeod have sided with the White House, but until the courts settle the dispute, all CFPB actions will likely be subject to legal challenge. Peter Weber

October 18, 2017
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His champagne wishes were replaced with sparkling wine reality, and now, he's suing.

Daniel Macduff of Quebec booked a flight on Sunwing Airlines to Cuba, going with the airline because it advertised a complimentary champagne toast for passengers, BBC News reports. What he was served wasn't champagne from the French region it's named after, but rather sparkling wine, Macduff said, and even that was provided only on the outbound flight. Macduff's attorney, Sebastien Paquette, says this is a classic case of misleading marketing. "It's not about the pettiness of champagne versus sparkling wine," he told the BBC. "It's the consumer message behind it."

Sunwing's marketing materials clearly showed authentic champagne, Paquette said, but Sunwing, which calls the lawsuit "frivolous and without merit," argues the terms "champagne vacations" and "champagne service" were used to "denote a level of service in reference to the entire hospitality package," not to describe beverages passengers would receive. The company has made some changes, no longer referring to champagne in its marketing materials and clearly stating online to expect sparkling wine only on southern routes, but that hasn't stopped 1,600 other plaintiffs from joining the class action lawsuit, Paquette said. They are seeking compensation for the difference in price between a glass of champagne and a glass of sparkling wine, in addition to punitive damages. Catherine Garcia

July 10, 2017
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The Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity is being sued by the American Civil Liberties Union, which says the commission broke federal law by not having its first meeting open to the public.

Led by Vice President Mike Pence and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, the commission has only held one meeting so far, two months ago. It was done over the phone and not public, and since the law "applies to all meetings, even telephonic meetings, the commission has already violated" the Federal Advisory Committee Act, ACLU staff lawyer Theresa Lee told NPR. The commission's next meeting is scheduled for July 19, and will be done over video. That also doesn't count as "open," Lee said, "because it does not provide the opportunity for sufficient public oversight as required by law, and is notably inaccessible to any citizens without a computer and a broadband internet connection."

In June, the commission — formed after Trump made baseless allegations that millions of people managed to vote illegally in the last presidential election — sent letters to every state and the District of Columbia, requesting extensive voter data, including names, party affiliation, and the last four digits of their Social Security number. Most states have flat out refused to hand over the information, either saying they can't because of state law or they won't because it's an invasion of privacy. The deadline for information was supposed to be Friday, but NPR reports Pence's office sent an email to secretaries of state Monday saying they can wait until a judge rules on a different lawsuit stemming from the collection of the data, filed by the Electronic Privacy Information Center. Catherine Garcia

July 7, 2017
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Accusing her of putting for-profit schools above students and their families, 18 Democratic attorneys general sued Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Thursday over her decision to delay and rewrite rules that make schools responsible financially for fraud.

"Since day one, Secretary DeVos has sided with for-profit school executives against students and families drowning in unaffordable student loans," Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey said in a statement. "Her decision to cancel vital protections for students and taxpayers is a betrayal of her office's responsibility and a violation of federal law."

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Washington, D.C., calls for the implementation of rules crafted during the Obama administration that were set to take effect July 1. On June 14, DeVos said the rules — which would also prevent schools from forcing students to resolve complaints outside of court — would be postponed and ultimately rewritten because they created a "muddled process that's unfair to students and schools and puts taxpayers on the hook for significant costs," The Associated Press reports. Catherine Garcia

June 27, 2017
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Sarah Palin is suing The New York Times for defamation, claiming the paper "violated the law and its own policies" in a June 14 editorial that accused the former Alaska governor of "political incitement" before the 2011 shooting of former Rep. Gabby Giffords, the New York Post reports.

Giffords, a Democrat from Arizona, was severely injured, and six people were killed after Jared Lee Loughner opened fire at a Giffords event. The Times editorial, written after the shooting of Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.), mentions a Palin political action committee ad that put "Giffords and 19 other Democrats under stylized crosshairs." Later, under fierce criticism, the paper issued a correction saying it was actually a "map distributed by a political action committee before the shooting. The map depicted electoral districts, not individual Democratic lawmakers, beneath stylized crosshairs." The correction went on to say the editorial "incorrectly stated that a link existed between political rhetoric and the 2011 shooting of Rep. Gabby Giffords. In fact, no such link was established."

The suit was filed Tuesday in federal court in Manhattan, and Palin is seeking damages in an amount to be determined by a jury at trial. A spokeswoman for the Times told the Post the paper has "not seen the claim yet, but will defend against any claim vigorously." Catherine Garcia

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