Minnesota - Ground Zero in First Amendment Battles

Event Description


How far can the government regulate speech before running afoul of the First Amendment? Minnesota has been at the forefront of that issue in recent years, generating a number of important—and controversial—judicial decisions. For example, in 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court invoked the First Amendment to strike down Minnesota’s ban on political apparel at polling places.  In 2019, the Minnesota Court of Appeals struck down Minnesota’s so-called “revenge porn” statute because it violated the First Amendment. Also in 2019, the Eighth Circuit ruled that the First Amendment trumped Minnesota’s efforts to use anti-discrimination laws to force wedding videographers to produce videos of same-sex weddings.

Minnesota also has been at the forefront of another battle implicating First Amendment concerns: How to balance the First Amendment’s protections in private defamation cases. For example, in 2019, the Minnesota Supreme Court limited the circumstances under which a private plaintiff can recover damages for defamatory statements involving a matter of public concern. In 2020, the Minnesota Supreme Court is set to decide the extent to which the press is protected from defamation claims when it reports on official, government proceedings.

Lunch and registration begin at 11:30 AM.


Steve Wells | Partner, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

CLE Credits:

1.0 Standard CLE credit | Event Code: TBD


Section Members:  $10
Public Attorney: $10 (use code APPPUBLIC at checkout)
MSBA Member:  $25
Non-MSBA Members:  $30
Law Students/Court Clerk: Free (use code CLERKS at checkout)

Remote Participation: 

Remote participation is available via webcast. Please choose this option when registering.

Deadline to register: March 24

Want more information about the Appellate Practice Section? 
To register with a check, please mail in this registration form.
Need to cancel? Please see our cancellation policy.
Questions? Contact Kayla Erbach  | 612-278-6325

The MSBA is committed to creating an inclusive environment in which all members can participate fully. If you need reasonable accommodations to participate in this event, please notify Kayla Erbach. Please provide notification at least 72 hours prior to the meeting to allow sufficient time to make arrangements for accommodations.

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Pre-Registration is Closed

Thursday, March 26, 2020

12:00 PM to 1:00 PM

Minneapolis, MN United States