Rank #1: First Amendment’s Clash with Censorship and Hate Speech
For the past year, the First Amendment, censorship, and hate speech have been at the forefront of the news cycle. From President Trump blocking users on Twitter, to violence at rallies or on college campuses, protections of our First Amendment have been tested. Also, with the rise in popularity of social media, it has become complicated when deciphering what is actually a First Amendment right and what is not.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, hosts Bob Ambrogi and Craig Williams join First Amendment attorney Robert Bertsche, partner with the firm Prince Lobel Tye, LLP, and Eugene Volokh, founder and co-author of the popular blog, The Volokh Conspiracy, as they define First Amendment, and how it relates to censorship and hate speech. Together, they differentiate and clarify government censorship versus public/private censorship, explore censorship policies on social media platforms, and discuss recent news items related to this topic.
Attorney Robert A. Bertsche is partner with the firm, Prince Lobel Tye, LLP. Rob is devoted to protecting and strengthening his clients’ ability to communicate their content on a wide variety of platforms, including digital, interactive, print, electronic, and social media.
Professor Eugene Volokh teaches free speech law, tort law, religious freedom law, church-state relations law, and a First Amendment amicus brief clinic at UCLA School of Law, where he has also often taught copyright law, criminal law, and a seminar on firearms regulation policy. He is also founder and co-author of the popular blog, The Volokh Conspiracy.
Sep 01 2017
Rank #2: Inside “Making a Murderer” and the Steven Avery Trial
Update: Brendan Dassey, nephew to Steven Avery, the primary defendant from the "Making a Murderer" series on Netflix had his conviction for murder, rape, and mutilation of a corpse overturned by U.S. Magistrate Judge William E. Duffin of the US District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin last Friday. This episode was recorded shortly before the development.
Back on October 31st of 2005, a young photographer named Teresa Halbach went missing. Teresa’s last meeting had been with Steven Avery, on the grounds of Avery's Auto Salvage in Manitowoc County, Wisconsin. Teresa’s remains were later found on the grounds of Avery’s home and family business. Avery was well known to law enforcement and had previously served a lengthy prison sentence for rape and attempted murder from which he was later exonerated on DNA evidence.
What transpired inspired the extremely popular Netflix series “Making a Murderer,” directed by Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos. The series spotlights Steven Avery and his quest for justice after claims that he was wrongfully accused in the murder of Teresa Halbach.
In 2005, Steven Avery was arrested for the murder of Teresa Halbach, and was ultimately represented by Wisconsin attorneys, Dean Strang and Jerry Buting. Strang and Buting presented their case and their defense strategy, bringing to light alleged tampering and planting of evidence by police. After a whirlwind of a trial, the verdict came back guilty, sending Steven Avery to jail for life without the possibility of parole. As Steven Avery sits in jail, a new attorney has taken over his case and Steven hopes for a new trial and maybe one day his freedom.
On this special episode of Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Bob Ambrogi joins Dean Strang, former defense attorney for Steven Avery, and Peter Linton-Smith, a former television news reporter who covered the Avery trials, as they discuss the popular Netflix series, “Making a Murderer.” Dean and Peter offer inside perspectives and get the latest on Steven Avery and his quest for a new trial and justice under a new attorney.
Dean Strang is a lawyer in Madison, Wisconsin, at the firm Strang Bradley, LLC. He is best known for his work as one of Steven Avery's trial lawyers, as well as for his first book, "Worse Than the Devil: Anarchists Clarence Darrow, and Justice in a Time of Terror." Mr. Strang served five years as Wisconsin’s first federal defender and co-founded Strang Bradley, LLC. He is an adjunct professor at Marquette University Law School, the University of Wisconsin Law School, and University of Wisconsin's Division of Continuing Studies. Mr. Strang is a member of the American Law Institute and serves on several charity boards, including the Wisconsin Innocence Project. His second book will be published in early 2018.
Peter Linton-Smith was a television news reporter for 24 years covering primarily courts (1988-2012). Peter has covered cases ranging from first degree murder, wrongful death, products liability, copyright dispute, employment and labor disputes. Peter has covered Steven Avery, both his civil and criminal case from 2003-2007. Peter is currently employed at Leventhal & Puga in Denver, Colorado.
If you want more on "Making a Murderer," check out the Defending Brendan Dassey of “Making a Murderer” Planet Lex episode, when Dassey's appeal attorneys discuss what it was like defending him.
Special thanks to our sponsor, Clio.
Aug 17 2016
Rank #3: California's AB5 Gig Work Bill
This month, California State Senators passed California Assembly Bill 5 better known as AB5, California’s Gig Economy Worker Bill. AB5 requires workers previously classified as independent contractors to be classified as employees. AB5 now heads to Governor Gavin Newsom’s office.
Supporters of the bill praise the minimum wage and sick leave benefits of AB5, affording them greater labor protections, whereas opponents, like Uber & Lyft, argue that AB5 would impact the flexibility and freedom of workers. States like Massachusetts, Virginia and New Jersey, already have laws similar to AB5 in place. On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Craig Williams is joined by Diane Mulcahy, an adjunct lecturer in the Entrepreneurship division at Babson College and author of The Gig Economy, and William B. Gould IV, the Charles A. Beardsley professor of law, Emeritus, at Stanford Law School, to discuss California's AB5 gig work bill, the gig-economy, and the impact on the workplace.
Sep 23 2019
Rank #4: The Golden State Killer, Genealogical Sites & Privacy
After decades of searching, Joseph James DeAngelo, whom authorities suspect is the so-called Golden State Killer or East Area Rapist, was arrested and suspected of committing a dozen murders and 50 rapes from 1976 to 1984. Prosecutors and law enforcement praised new DNA techniques used to catch the suspect, while defense attorneys and DNA experts voiced concern over the privacy and ethical concerns over customer data.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, hosts Bob Ambrogi and Craig Williams join attorney Bicka Barlow from the Law Office of Bicka Barlow, and Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley, as they take a look at the Golden State Killer. They discuss the latest DNA techniques used in cases, the controversy over tracking down alleged perpetrators through genealogy websites, law enforcement's vantage point, the investigation process, and privacy and ethical concerns over data.
Special thanks to our sponsors, Clio.
May 17 2018
Rank #5: Take a Knee Movement, the NFL, and the First Amendment
Last football season, the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers quarterback, Colin Kaepernick, famously took a knee during the National Anthem as a silent protest against police violence against people of color. Many were outraged by Kaepernick’s stance and saw it as a sign of disrespect for the country, flag, military, and police, where others applauded the movement, including fellow NFL players who supported Kaepernick's gesture of racial equality by also taking a knee in solidarity during the National Anthem.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Craig Williams joins attorney Alan Milstein from Sherman, Silverstein, Kohl, Rose & Podolsky, P.A and attorney Marc Randazza, the managing partner of Randazza Legal Group, as they discuss the controversy over #takeaknee, players’ rights, the First Amendment, President Trump reaction, and the NFL’s role in this controversy, as well as the potential impact on the NFL and other sports.
Alan Milstein is an adjunct faculty member at the University of New Hampshire School of Law and Temple University as well as a shareholder and chairman of the litigation department at Sherman, Silverstein, Kohl, Rose & Podolsky, P.A. in Moorestown, New Jersey.
Attorney Marc Randazza is the managing partner of Randazza Legal Group and is a nationally-known First Amendment and intellectual property attorney.
Oct 27 2017
Rank #6: Inside Impeachment
On September 24, 2019, House speaker Nancy Pelosi initiated an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump. Unsurprisingly, the White House and its allies have been vocally opposed to the inquiry, and in many cases have sought to impede the investigation, with some officials and connected actors refusing to comply with congressional subpoenas. Despite these efforts, Democrats continue to work to build a case of impeachment by gathering evidence through the testimony of various players connected to the whistleblower complaint.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Craig Williams is joined by returning guest attorney Frank O. Bowman III, professor of law at the University of Missouri School of Law and attorney Gene Healy, a vice president at the Cato Institute, as they spotlight impeachment, discuss the inquiry, the process, the players, and what this means for the presidency.
Oct 18 2019
Rank #7: Inside the Liability of Selfies
Social media and the ubiquity of technology have created a culture in which people feel compelled to capture a moment and immediately share it with their friends, family, and followers. Oftentimes this takes the form of a "selfie". A “selfie” is defined as a photograph that one has taken of oneself, usually with a smartphone or webcam. Unfortunately, in pursuit of the perfect “selfie”, some have put themselves in extreme danger, resulting in injury and even death. According to a study in India’s Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care, between 2011 and 2017, 259 people were reported killed worldwide in selfie-related incidents. Drownings, falls, fires and automobile accidents have been just some of the leading causes of death according to the report.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Craig Williams is joined by Mitch Jackson, a California trial lawyer who has written a book, “The Ultimate Guide to Social Media for Business Owners, Professionals and Entrepreneurs”. Mitch and Craig discuss the liability that has arisen around selfies, the dangers people put themselves in to meet society’s obsession with capturing the perfect moment, and what may need to change.
Nov 15 2019
Rank #8: Inside the FBI, Comey Firing, and the Russia Connection
On May 9th, 2017, President Trump fired James Comey, the seventh Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Although the accounts are in dispute, it was reported that days before his dismissal, Comey had requested more resources for an FBI probe into the alleged meddling of Russia in the presidential election. The Justice Department has since denied those allegations. Many were stunned by the dismissal of Comey and are questioning the reasons behind it.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Craig Williams joins Ronald Kessler, author of “The FBI: Inside the World's Most Powerful Law Enforcement Agency”, and Asha Rangappa, associate dean at Yale Law School and former special agent for the FBI, as they take an inside look at the FBI, the dismissal of Comey, the legalities triggered by dismissals, and the Russia connection.
Ronald Kessler is the New York Times bestselling author of 20 non-fiction books. For Kessler's eighth book, “The FBI: Inside the World's Most Powerful Law Enforcement Agency”, the FBI gave Kessler unprecedented access to the bureau.
Asha Rangappa is associate dean at Yale Law School. Prior to her current position, Asha served as a special agent in the New York office of the FBI, specializing in counterintelligence investigations.
May 26 2017
Rank #9: Florida School Shooting: Gun Legislation, Mental Health, and Prevention
On February 14, 2018, a shooter opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school in Parkland, Florida, killing 17 and wounding many. We have covered mass shootings over the years here on Lawyer 2 Lawyer. From Sandy Hook to Orlando, and most recently Las Vegas, Mass shootings seem to be becoming the new normal. Gun advocates voice their concerns over a growing problem of individuals with mental health issues, where the anti-gun movement calls for stricter regulations and legislation when it comes to the purchasing of guns.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, hosts Bob Ambrogi and Craig Williams join attorney Stephen P. Halbrook, senior fellow at the Independent Institute, and professor John J. Donohue III from Stanford Law School, as they discuss this recent tragedy, mental health, gun legislation and gun control, and what can be done to prevent future mass shootings.
Attorney Stephen P. Halbrook is senior fellow at the Independent Institute and author of the forthcoming book, Gun Control in Nazi-Occupied France.
Professor John J. Donohue III is from Stanford Law School and has been one of the leading empirical researchers in the legal academy over the past 25 years.
Feb 27 2018
Rank #10: The Legalities of Amazon’s Echo
Recently, prosecutors involved in a 2015 Arkansas murder case have included Amazon’s Echo as technology-based evidence.The Echo is a hands-free speaker you control with your voice, connecting to the Alexa Voice Service to play music, provide information, news, sports scores, weather, and more. In this investigation, law enforcement discovered that the Amazon Echo could host important recordings and clues that are relevant to the murder case.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, hosts J. Craig Williams and Bob Ambrogi join Andrew Rossow, cyberspace and technology attorney, and Craig Ball, a trial attorney and expert in digital forensics, as they take a look at the legalities surrounding Amazon’s Echo, technology-based evidence, and the impact on future cases.
Drew Rossow is a cyberspace and technology attorney in Dayton, Ohio. He recently wrote an article titled, “Amazon Echo May Be Sending Its Sound Waves into the Court Room as our First ‘Smart Witness.’”
Craig Ball is a board certified trial attorney in Texas and an adjunct professor at the University of Texas School of Law teaching electronic evidence and digital discovery. For nine years, he wrote the award winning column on computer forensics and e-discovery for American Lawyer Media called "Ball in your Court," and still pens a popular blog of the same name at ballinyourcourt.com.
Jan 20 2017
Rank #11: The Supreme Court’s End of Term
The Supreme Court ended its term on Monday, June 27, 2017. Decisions were handed down in a variety of cases including cases involving big corporations, church and state, voting rights, and most notably, the controversial travel ban, put forth by President Trump.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Bob Ambrogi joins attorney and constitutional scholar, David J. Shestokas, author of the book, Creating the Declaration of Independence and Carolyn Shapiro, associate professor of law and co-director of the Institute on the Supreme Court of the United States at Chicago-Kent College of Law, as they discuss the Supreme Court’s end of term, landmark cases and decisions, the addition of Gorsuch to the high court, and look ahead to upcoming cases on the docket.
Attorney and constitutional scholar David J. Shestokas is author of the new book, Creating the Declaration of Independence, which takes you through the thoughts of the men and the political climate of the day as they forged the bold and barrier breaking document embracing the ‘law of nature and nature’s god’, as a foundation for self-government.
Carolyn Shapiro is an associate professor of law and co-director of the Institute on the Supreme Court of the United States at Chicago-Kent College of Law. From 2014 through mid-2016, Professor Shapiro took a leave of absence from Chicago-Kent to serve as Illinois solicitor general.
Jul 21 2017
Rank #12: The Paris Agreement on Climate Change
On June 1st 2017, President Trump announced that the United States will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement. This accord was negotiated in 2015 to limit and reduce global warming. Environmental organizations voiced their outrage over the decision citing a denial of climate change and a threat to our environment, whereas supporters of the withdrawal praised President Trump’s decision claiming it would create domestic energy production and jobs stateside.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Bob Ambrogi joins environmental attorney Jeffrey B. Gracer from the firm Sive, Paget & Riesel and Nicolas Loris, an economist from The Heritage Foundation, as they take a look at the Paris Agreement on climate change, President Trump’s withdrawal from the accord, climate change, the impact on international law and relations, and the long-term implications for the economy and the environment.
Attorney Jeffrey B. Gracer is from the firm Sive, Paget & Riesel. Jeff has a vibrant domestic and international environmental law practice.
Nicolas (Nick) Loris is an economist who focuses on energy, environmental, and regulatory issues as the Herbert and Joyce Morgan fellow at The Heritage Foundation.
Jun 09 2017
Rank #13: Gerrymandering and Impact of Redistricting Litigation
Gerrymandering is the dividing of a state, county, etc. into election districts so as to give one political party a majority in many districts while concentrating the voting strength of the other party into as few districts as possible. This strategy has been deployed by both political parties throughout history. In gerrymandering, “cracking” and “packing” are tactics of drawing peculiarly shaped districts to capture the desired results. Currently redistricting litigation remains pending in eight states and just this week, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court struck down the state’s congressional map, saying it illegally benefits the GOP, violating the state constitution.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Craig Williams joins professor Edward B. Foley, director of Election Law at Moritz College of Law, and Thomas Wolf, counsel with the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice, to discuss the history of gerrymandering, redistricting litigation across the nation, and the impact of gerrymandering on elections.
Professor Edward B. Foley (Ned) is director of Election Law at Moritz College of Law/Ohio State’s law school, where he also holds the Ebersold Chair in Constitutional Law.
Thomas (Tom) Wolf is counsel with the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice, focusing on redistricting issues.
Jan 26 2018
Rank #14: Legal Implications of the Equifax Data Breach
The credit-reporting agency Equifax experienced a massive data breach, exposing the personal and financial data of 143 million U.S. consumers, including names, birthdates, addresses, and even social security numbers and license numbers.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, hosts Bob Ambrogi and Craig Williams join Attorney Drew Rossow, from the firm Gregory M. Gantt Co. LPA, and attorney Ben Meiselas, from Geragos & Geragos, APC, to discuss the Equifax data breach, what went wrong, litigation, the potential impact, and what customers need to do if they discover that they are victims of this breach.
Andrew Rossow is an associate attorney at Gregory M. Gantt Co. LPA where, in addition to their general practice, Drew’s passion lies in the areas of cyberspace law and technology law.
Attorney Ben Meiselas is an associate at Geragos & Geragos, APC. His practice includes personal injury law, civil rights, class actions, and complex business disputes.
Sep 29 2017
Rank #15: The Electoral College, National Popular Vote, and the Presidential Election
The Electoral College has become somewhat of a controversial talking point when it comes to deciding the presidency. Some have praised the Electoral College citing its creation by our Founding Fathers, while others have produced legislation to abolish the Electoral College in its entirety, favoring electing our president though a national popular vote. On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host J. Craig Williams joins Trent England, director of the Save Our States project and Dr. John R. Koza, originator of the National Popular Vote legislation, as they discuss history of the Electoral College, Electoral College vs. national popular vote, and the great debate over the Electoral College, especially during this presidential election.
Trent England is vice president for strategic initiatives at the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, where he also is the David and Ann Brown Distinguished Fellow for the Advancement of Liberty and directs the Save Our States project.
Dr. John R. Koza is lead author of the book Every Vote Equal: A State-Based Plan for Electing the President by National Popular Vote and originator of the National Popular Vote legislation.
Special thanks to our sponsor, Clio.
Oct 28 2016
Rank #16: Illinois Disciplinary Agency's Report on Client-Lawyer Matching
Last week, the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission, better known as ARDC, published its report on client-lawyer matching services and attorneys’ participation in for-profit referral services. On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Bob Ambrogi joins Jerome (Jerry) Larkin, administrator of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission (ARDC) and author of the recently-published report, as they take a look at the ARDC's recent report on client-lawyer matching services, lawyer participation in these services, and regulation of for-profit referral services.
Jerome (Jerry) E. Larkin is administrator of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission (ARDC). Jerry is responsible for administering the agency, which registers Illinois lawyers and investigates and prosecutes allegations of ethical violations.
Special thanks to our sponsors, Clio.
Jun 08 2018
Rank #17: FISA and the Nunes Memo
Last week, a controversial 4 page memo created by Republican staffers and House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes alleging abuse of surveillance authority by the Justice Department and FBI was released after being declassified by President Trump. In a nutshell, the Nunes memo alleges that the FBI may have relied on “politically motivated or questionable sources" to obtain a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant in the early phases of the FBI's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, hosts Bob Ambrogi and Craig Williams join Robert E. Anderson, Jr., managing director of Navigant and a former national security executive with the FBI, and John Malcolm, vice president of the Institute for Constitutional Government for the Heritage Foundation and former deputy assistant attorney general in the Department of Justice Criminal Division, as they discuss the release of the Nunes memo, impact, the Democrat’s response to the memo, FISA, and the legalities surrounding this release.
Robert E. Anderson, Jr. is managing director of Navigant. After serving with the FBI for over 20 years, Anderson is a recognized expert in cybersecurity, incident response, cyber hacking, counterintelligence, and economic espionage.
John Malcolm is vice president of the Institute for Constitutional Government for the Heritage Foundation, director of the Meese Center for Legal & Judicial Studies, and Senior Legal Fellow.
Feb 09 2018
Rank #18: Orlando Shooting and Gun Laws
On June 12, 2016, tragedy struck at Pulse, a popular nightclub within the LGBT community in Orlando, Florida, after a gunman, Omar Mateen fatally shot 49 people and injured 53. This tragedy is one of the deadliest mass shootings in the United States and the nation's worst terror attack since 9/11. In a Father's Day address, President Obama said gun violence was "preventable" and too common. "It's unconscionable that we allow easy access to weapons of war in these places," he said. And just yesterday, a divided Senate voted down 4 gun control measures.
So what needs to change when it comes to gun laws, all while protecting the Second Amendment? And can bipartisan gun legislation curb gun violence and prevent future mass shootings?
In this episode of Lawyer 2 Lawyer, hosts J. Craig Williams and Bob Ambrogi join attorney Steven W. Dulan, first vice chair of the Michigan Coalition of Responsible Gun Owners and Arkadi Gerney, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, as they take a look at gun laws and the tragedy in Orlando. They will talk reaction, the gun control debate, the Second Amendment, Florida gun laws and potential legislation.
Attorney Steven W. Dulan is first vice chair of the Michigan Coalition of Responsible Gun Owners. MCRGO is the largest state-based firearms advocacy organization in America and its mission is to promote safe use and ownership of firearms through education, litigation, and legislation. Steve has appeared on various media outlets to discuss gun ownership, including CNN (with Christiane Amanpour and Piers Morgan), FOX and Friends, NPR, and HuffPost Live.
Attorney Arkadi Gerney is senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, where he focuses on crime and gun policy. Arkadi previously worked as special advisor and first deputy criminal justice coordinator to former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, where he managed Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a national coalition that Mayor Bloomberg co-chairs. During four and a half years in the New York City mayor’s office, Gerney oversaw the coalition’s growth to more than 600 mayors, led successful campaigns to influence federal legislation, partnered with Walmart to develop a landmark gun seller code of conduct, and led New York City’s undercover investigation of out-of-state gun shows.
Special thanks to our sponsor, Clio.
Jul 01 2016
Rank #19: The College Admissions Scandal
In what can be classified as the nation's largest-ever college admissions bribery scandal, on March 12, 2019, U.S federal prosecutors out of Boston, Massachusetts charged 50 individuals with allegedly being part of a scheme to influence admissions decisions at colleges and universities across the States.
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Craig Williams is joined by professor Joy Blanchard from Louisiana State University’s College of Human Sciences & Education and Steve Cohen, an attorney at Pollock Cohen LLP, as they spotlight the recent college admissions scandal. We will take a look at the charges against the alleged participants involved in this controversy, the litigation brought by students against colleges, and the impact this scandal will have on colleges, the admissions process, and future students.
Special thanks to our sponsors, Clio.
Mar 22 2019
Rank #20: Bail Reform & Controversy & SB10
The Eighth Amendment to the Constitution states: “Excessive bail will not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishment inflicted.” On August 28th, 2018, Governor Jerry Brown of California signed into law the California Money Bail Reform Act, more commonly known as SB10. This legislation eliminates cash bail replacing it with a “risk assessment” of an individual and will go into effect in October of 2019. After a 2 year push, SB10 was approved with largely Democratic support, but faced heavy opposition from many including the bail industry. In addition, original co-sponsors of the bill, including the ACLU of California, changed positions after an eleventh hour change to SB10, stating that the bill granted too much power to the courts, thus creating “racial biases and disparities that permeate our justice system.”
On Lawyer 2 Lawyer, host Craig Williams joins attorney Jeff Clayton, the executive director of the American Bail Coalition and attorney Shima Baradaran Baughman, a professor at the University of Utah's S.J. Quinney College of Law, for a discussion about bail reform, the recently signed California Money Bail Reform Act (SB10), and the future impact.
Sep 21 2018