The Buckeye Institute Urges U.S. Supreme Court to End Laws that Force Attorneys to Support Political Speech

Jan 17, 2022

Columbus, OH – On Monday, The Buckeye Institute filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court of the United States in McDonald v. Firth, urging the court to hear the case and end laws that force lawyers to join state-sponsored bar associations that engage in lobbying on inherently political and ideological issues to practice their profession.

“Forcing attorneys to pay dues—that subsidize political and ideological speech—to the State Bar of Texas violates the First Amendment rights of freedom of speech and freedom of association,” said Robert Alt, president and chief executive officer of The Buckeye Institute. “In McDonald v. Firth, the high court has an opportunity to extend the rights it recognized in Janus to attorneys so they can practice their profession without being compelled to pay for speech with which they disagree.”

McDonald v. Firth challenges mandatory bar association membership that requires attorneys to become members and pay dues to the State Bar of Texas—which engages in political speech and lobbying—in order to practice law in Texas.

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UPDATE: April 4, 2022, cert was denied by the Supreme Court of the United States.