Ballot Access: Constitutionality of Residency Requirements for Ballot Initiative-Petition Circulators

Author: Maxel Moreland, Associate Member, University of Cincinnati Law Review

The Sixth Circuit recently reviewed a case regarding an Ohio statute that required initiative-petition circulators to reside in the state of Ohio.[1] The district court declared the law unconstitutional, and the issue of a residency requirement for circulators was not challenged on appeal.[2] Although not challenged by Ohio’s Secretary of State in Citizens in Charge, Inc. v. Husted, the court does analyze the issue of residency requirements and acknowledges that a circuit split still exists regarding whether they are constitutional.[3] Currently, the Second, Eighth, and Tenth Circuits all have different standards to adjudicate the constitutionality of these residency requirements.[4] The inconsistent adjudications over residency requirements for initiative-petition circulators should be cured by a clear and uniform judicial standard to resolve this open constitutional question. The Tenth Circuit’s determination that residency requirements were unconstitutional should be adopted, as it does not infringe upon an individual’s right to political association.[5] Continue reading “Ballot Access: Constitutionality of Residency Requirements for Ballot Initiative-Petition Circulators”

Warrantless “Across the Threshold” Arrest: Arrest of Defendant in Defendant’s Doorway

Author: Maxel Moreland, Associate Member, University of Cincinnati Law Review

Early Fourth Amendment jurisprudence originally focused on whether a common-law trespass had occurred.[1] Now, the Supreme Court no longer requires an individual to prove that a property trespass occurred before asserting that their Fourth Amendment rights were violated.[2] However, the ancient connection between a person and their home still warrants significant Fourth Amendment protection. The Fourth Amendment respects that connection and affords protection to houses, persons, papers, and effects, with the home being first amongst equals.[3]

In New York v. Payton, the Court held that, absent a warrant or exigent circumstances, the Fourth Amendment prohibits law enforcement from nonconsensual entry into a suspect’s home in order to make an arrest.[4] Currently, a disagreement between circuits exists on whether Payton should extend to instances where the officer makes an arrest without physical intrusion into the home. The Second Circuit recently extended Payton’s protections to include instances where an officer, without physical entry into the home, arrests a home-dweller.[5] Other circuits reviewing this issue have two schools of thought. The Eleventh, Seventh, and Fifth Circuits have held that there is no Payton violation without physical intrusion into the home by law enforcement.[6] Alternatively, the Ninth, Sixth, and Tenth Circuits have held that a Payton violation may occur if law enforcement engages in coercive behavior, while still not physically entering the house, to arrest the home-dweller.[7] Ultimately, courts should follow the Second Circuit’s rule and base Payton analysis on the location of the defendant rather than law enforcement, as it better protects the individual right to privacy within the home. Continue reading “Warrantless “Across the Threshold” Arrest: Arrest of Defendant in Defendant’s Doorway”

To Arbitrate, or Not to Arbitrate: A Question of Contractual Interpretation

Author: Collin L. Ryan, Associate Member, University of Cincinnati Law Review

Arbitration. Most know and understand the term and its function for resolving differences. Yet if asked to classify the act of arbitrating a legal dispute under a broader category, where would the term fit? Is it an action? Is it a proceeding? Or is it something entirely separate and apart from such umbrella terminology, incapable of categorization? A current circuit split exists regarding that precise issue.[1] Specifically at issue is whether a party’s right to arbitrate a dispute is encompassed and superseded by a forum selection clause stating that “all actions and proceedings” be brought in a particular court, thus precluding the party’s right to commence arbitration.[2] The correct approach is that of the Fourth Circuit, which has held that arbitration rights are not precluded by this forum selection clause.

Continue reading “To Arbitrate, or Not to Arbitrate: A Question of Contractual Interpretation”