Pacific Legal Foundation: Sacramento city councilman reminded that the Constitution protects freedom of association (In the News)

Pacific Legal Foundation: Sacramento city councilman reminded that the Constitution protects freedom of association

By Caleb Trotter

It seems that Sacramento City Councilman Jay Schenirer has grown weary of a watchdog organization (Eye on Sacramento) that routinely challenges proposed ordinances and policies, and generally serves as a vocal check on city government. Councilman Schenirer requested the group provide him with a list of its members, a detailed accounting of its funds and donors, and its organizational bylaws-all in the name of “transparency.”…

In 2014, in Center for Competitive Politics v. Harris, a non-profit organization challenged California Attorney General (now Senator-elect) Kamala Harris’ policy that required non-profits soliciting funds in California to provide the Attorney General with a document listing the names and information of all donors giving the organization more than $5,000 in a year. Since the Attorney General’s office routinely discloses that private information to the public “by mistake,” and since the United States Supreme Court held long ago that “inviolability of privacy in group association may in many circumstances be indispensable to preservation of freedom of association, particularly when a group espouses dissident beliefs,” the group urged the court to declare the policy unconstitutional.

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