Doe v. Reed

Doe v. Reed is a case regarding petition privacy, with the petitioners being represented by Jim Bopp.

In Sept. 2009, a federal court prevented the release of the names of 138,500-some individuals who signed a petition for a ballot initiative to overturn a domestic-partnership law passed by the state legislature. Protect Marriage, which organized the petition effort, sued. Bopp argues that the experience of Washington activists and opponents of gay marriage in California’s Proposition 8 campaign shows a record of harassment and intimidation targeted at people who are forced to register their personal information publicly with the state in order to exercise their First Amendment rights.

In this case, the court will decide “[w]hether the First Amendment right to privacy in political speech, association, and belief requires strict scrutiny when a state compels public release of identifying information about petition signers.” Another procedural issue: “Whether compelled public disclosure of identifying information about petition signers is narrowly tailored to a compelling interest, and whether Petitioners met all the elements required for a preliminary injunction.”


Court Filings & Rulings
Brief for Doe #1, Doe #2 and Protect Marriage Washington
Brief for Sam Reed
Amici in support of Doe
CCP Doe v Reed Amicus Brief
Seattle Post-Intelligencer: State to U.S. Supreme Court: R-71 Signatures are Public
Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Gay Rights Opponents to U.S. Supreme Court: Release of Petitioners’ Names Could Spark Violence
Los Angeles Times: Sign a Petition, Disclose Your Name?
New York Times: Court to Rule on Right to Privacy for Referendum Petition Signers
Online & Blogs
CCP: Opening brief filed in petition privacy case

Press Releases

The Center for Competitive Politics is now the Institute for Free Speech.