The City of Chicago v. Sessions III

Filing 98

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER Signed by the Honorable Harry D. Leinenweber on 10/13/2017:Mailed notice(wp, )

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Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 1 of 17 PageID #:1378 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS EASTERN DIVISION THE CITY OF CHICAGO, Plaintiff, Case No. 17 C 5720 v. Judge Harry D. Leinenweber JEFFERSON BEAUREGARD SESSIONS III, Attorney General of the United States, Defendant. MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER The Attorney application of General this moves Court’s to stay preliminary the nationwide injunction against imposition of certain conditions on the 2017 Byrne JAG grant pending resolution Seventh Circuit herein, Defendant’s of Court the of Attorney General’s Appeals. Motion to Stay For the Nationwide appeal reasons to the stated Application of Preliminary Injunction [ECF No. 80] is denied. I. BACKGROUND The Court assumes familiarity with the underlying facts of this case as recited in its opinion granting in part the City of Chicago’s motion for a preliminary injunction. See, generally, City of Chicago v. Sessions, No. 17 C 5720, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 149847 (N.D. Ill. Sep. 15, 2017). In support of the instant motion, the Attorney General has pointed to additional Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 2 of 17 PageID #:1379 facts that merit discussion here. The Attorney General’s office has applications received nearly a thousand for Byrne JAG funding for FY 2017, and nearly all those applications await award notifications “Department”). from (See, Hanson, ¶ 4.) the ECF Department No. 82, Second of Justice Decl. of (the Alan R. In prior years, the majority of Byrne JAG awards were already issued by this time of the year. (Id. ¶ 9.) The Attorney General argues that this Court’s nationwide preliminary injunction prevents the Department from issuing the Byrne JAG award notifications because, even if the appeal is successful, the Attorney General will be unable to add the notice and access conditions after the award notifications issue. The Attorney General urges process past imposing budgets under that which significant September heavy (id. a ¶ of burdens 11), states this on in the grant-making raises year the prospect localities disrupting issue delay state sub-awards of with relatively grant-making Byrne JAG of small processes funds (id. ¶ 12), and undermining recovery efforts in jurisdictions that have recently suffered natural disasters (id. ¶ 13). this delay and the attendant burdens, the requests a stay of the preliminary injunction. - 2 - Attorney To avoid General Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 3 of 17 PageID #:1380 II. LEGAL STANDARD The analysis for “granting a stay pending appeal mirrors that for granting Enters., Inc. a II, preliminary 742 F.3d injunction.” 763, 766 (7th In Cir. re A & 2014). F In determining whether to grant a stay, the court should consider “the moving party’s likelihood of success on the merits, the irreparable harm that will result to each side if the stay is either granted interest movant issue. (7th or favors can denied one in side demonstrate error, or the the first and whether other.” two Ibid. factors is the public Whether a the threshold See, In re Forty-Eight Insulations, 115 F.3d 1294, 1300 Cir. 1997). “If the movant can make these threshold showings, the court then moves on to balance the relative harms considering all four factors using a ‘sliding scale’ approach.” Id. at 1300-01. A stay pending appeal is intended “to minimize the costs of error” and “to mitigate the damage that can be done during the interim period resolved on its merits.” before a legal issue is finally In re A & F Enters., 742 F.3d at 766. As the Supreme Court recently stated, “[c]rafting a preliminary injunction dependent is as an much exercise on the of discretion equities of a and given substance of the legal issues it presents.” - 3 - judgment, case often as the Trump v. Int’l Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 4 of 17 PageID #:1381 Refugee Assistance Project (“IRAP”), 137 S.Ct. 2080, 2087 (2017) (citations omitted). III. ANALYSIS The Attorney General argues that the City of Chicago (the “City”) lacks Article III standing beyond its alleged injury-in-fact. for any remedy that goes (The Court notes that this argument may be mooted by the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ pending Motion to Intervene, but in this Opinion does not consider the effect of such an intervention.) There is no dispute that the City has standing vis-à-vis the notice and access conditions. Nonetheless, the Attorney General contends that the City’s standing is cut off at its jurisdictional boundaries, preventing the Court from fashioning a remedy any broader in scope than that required disagrees. to redress the City’s injury. The Court Once a constitutional violation has been shown, “the nature of the remedy must be determined by the nature and the scope of the constitutional violation.” Koo v. McBride, 124 F.3d 869, 873 (7th Cir. 1997); see also, Missouri v. Jenkins, 515 U.S. 70, 89 (1995) (“The nature of the . . . remedy is to be determined by the nature and scope violation.”) (quotation omitted). likely constitutional violation. of the constitutional The City has demonstrated a It is the “nature and scope of the constitutional violation” that defines the remedy for this - 4 - Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 5 of 17 PageID #:1382 violation, not the particular plaintiff. Ibid. Here, the constitutional transgression is national in scope because the notice and access conditions, shown unconstitutional, were imposed nationwide. to be likely Thus, a preliminary injunction may “bind” the “part[y]” before the Court, in this case the Attorney General, to prevent the constitutional violations at issue regardless of where they may occur. CIV. P. 65(d). “[O]nce a constitutional FED. R. violation is demonstrated, the scope of a district court’s equitable powers to remedy past wrongs is broad, for breadth and flexibility are inherent in equitable remedies.” Preston v. Thompson, 589 F.2d 300, 303 (7th Cir. 1978) (quoting Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Bd. of Educ., 402 U.S. 1, 15 (1971)). The Constitution vests a district court with “the judicial Power of the United States.” U.S. Const. art. III, § 1. This power is not limited to the jurisdiction in which the district court sits: “[i]t is not beyond the power of a court, in appropriate circumstances, to issue a nationwide injunction.” 188 (5th Cir. 2015), as Texas v. U.S., 809 F.3d 134, revised (Nov. 25, 2015), aff’d by equally divided court, 136 S.Ct. 2271 (2016). The circumstances here are appropriate. Because the Attorney General’s authority, or lack thereof, will not vary by jurisdiction, the cases cited - 5 - in support of a stay are Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 6 of 17 PageID #:1383 inapposite. In Lewis v. Casey, 518 U.S. 343 (1996), the evidence failed to show systemic violations necessary to justify a state-wide injunction in Arizona’s prison libraries, as the challenged conduct could have been present in some prisons but not others. Id. at 359-60. This case, on the other hand, implicates a facial challenge to a federal statute; the Attorney General’s authority to impose Byrne JAG conditions on the City will not differ from his authority to do so elsewhere. No additional evidence is needed to justify the nationwide scope of the injunction because the Attorney General’s authority does not vary state by state like the conditions libraries may vary prison to prison. of access to legal See, id. Town of Chester, N.Y. v. Laroe Estates, Inc., 137 S.Ct. 1645, 1648-49 (2017), is also unavailing. There, the Court analyzed whether an intervenor as a matter of right has standing to claim a remedy separate from that sought by the plaintiff. found no case extending Town of Chester’s This Court has rationale to the proposition advanced by the Attorney General - that, regardless of the standing likely is constitutional barred from violation injunctive shown, relief a broader party with than that which directly impacts it. Next, the Attorney General argues that equitable principles require that the injunction be no more burdensome than necessary - 6 - Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 7 of 17 PageID #:1384 to resolve a plaintiff’s injury. While true that an injunction should be “no more burdensome than necessary to provide complete relief,” Madsen v. Women’s Health Ctr., Inc., 512 U.S. 753, 778 (1994), a nationwide injunction is necessary to provide complete relief from the likely constitutional violation at issue here. See, McBride, 124 F.3d at 873; see also, Bailey v. Patterson, 323 F.2d 201, 206 (5th Cir. 1963) (“The very nature of the rights appellants seek to vindicate requires that the decree run to the benefit not only of appellants but also for all persons similarly situated.”). As the City’s cited authority indicates, nationwide injunctions have been upheld numerous times where the remedy provided relief to non-parties as well as the plaintiff. See, e.g., Decker v. O’Donnell, 661 F.2d 598, 618 (7th Cir. 1980); Texas nationwide v. scope U.S., of 809 F.3d at preliminary 187-88 n. injunction 211 (upholding and collecting cases). Most validates significantly, the injunction here. a nationwide recent Supreme application of Court the decision preliminary In International Refugee Assistance Project v. Trump, 857 F.3d 554 (4th Cir. 2017), vacated as moot, 583 U.S. __ (2017), the Fourth Circuit upheld the nationwide scope of a preliminary injunction enjoining, inter alia, portions of the President’s executive order barring - 7 - certain foreign nationals Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 8 of 17 PageID #:1385 from entering the United States. The government appealed and, while moved the appeal injunction. was pending, for a stay of the See, Trump v. IRAP, 137 S.Ct. 2080, 2083 (2017). The Supreme Court granted in part and denied in part the motion to stay the nationwide injunction. Id. at 2089. Although the Supreme Court narrowed the categories of persons to whom the injunction applied, the nationwide application of the injunction was upheld “with respect to parties similarly situated to [the plaintiffs].” Id. at 2088. Consistent with the Supreme Court’s analysis, the scope of the nationwide preliminary injunction at issue here includes governments. argument injunction situated states and local In fact, the dissenting Justices made the exact the criticizing similarly Attorney the for General majority other for similarly advances upholding situated here, the specifically scope persons and of the ignoring that “a court’s role is to provide relief only to claimants.” Id. at 2090 (Thomas, J., dissenting) (quotations and alterations omitted) (“But the Court takes the additional step of keeping the injunctions in place with regard to an unidentified, unnamed group of foreign nationals abroad.”). The Attorney General’s argument to stay the injunction parallels that adopted by the dissent but clearly rejected by - 8 - the majority of the Supreme Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 9 of 17 PageID #:1386 Court. See, id. at 2088. Thus, the Court is duty-bound to reject it here as well. Similarly, injunction the where Seventh the Circuit evidence involved one jurisdiction. has before upheld the a nationwide court primarily In Decker, the appellant argued that the district court erred by entering a nationwide injunction where the fact-finding had focused on Milwaukee County. Decker, 661 F.2d at 617-18. See, The court affirmed the nationwide scope of the preliminary injunction, reasoning that the court’s “analysis . . . relied primarily on the statute and regulation and ha[d] used the evidence on funding in Milwaukee County merely as illustration.” Id. at 618. The Attorney General’s authority for cabining injunctive relief to only the plaintiff’s injury is distinguishable. In Monsanto Co. v. Geertson Seed Farms, 561 U.S. 139 (2010), the Supreme Court violation federal of reviewed the agency statement overturned the lawfully completing to the a new injunction based Environmental Policy complete to an alfalfa. emphasizing partial The that deregulation a where a environmental impact harming the plaintiffs. Id. at 165-66. - 9 - impact Supreme the of Act on environmental deregulating injunction, approve permanent National failed prior a Court agency could alfalfa statement before without Because the district Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 10 of 17 PageID #:1387 court had enjoined the agency from approving not just a complete but also a partial deregulation, the injunction was overbroad. Ibid. Monsanto does not apply here. In Monsanto, the injunction prevented the agency from using its lawful authority to impose a partial deregulation that had not been shown to harm the plaintiffs. has no lawful See, ibid. authority conditions. An inhibits Attorney the Here, the Attorney General likely to injunction statutory authority. impose is General not the assessed injunction defendants’ “whether significant burden no acting and access it merely his likely where beyond Madsen v. Women’s Health Center, 512 U.S. government Amendment rights, See, id. at 765. the more Because the injunction there First applied a different standard. Court notice overbroad from 753 (1994), is also inapplicable. restricted the challenged speech interest.” than There, the provisions necessary Ibid. Madsen No to of the serve similar a First Amendment concern is present here. With General respect argues to that equitable staying considerations, the nationwide the sweep Attorney of the injunction would allow the Department to include the notice and access conditions in award notifications while a decision on the merits is reached, thus preventing burdens on localities that might attend a significant delay in Byrne JAG funding. - 10 - The Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 11 of 17 PageID #:1388 difficulty with this proposition is that, in essence, the proposed “fix” would allow the Attorney General to impose what this Court has ruled are likely unconstitutional conditions across a number of jurisdictions prior to a decision on the merits. This is not an equitable result, particularly where the Court’s preliminary injunction merely preserves the status quo to await a final decision. AND PROCEDURE § Weinberger, 65.20 522 See, Wright & Miller, FEDERAL PRACTICE (2017); F.2d 921, see 926 also, (7th Am. Cir. Med. 1975) Ass’n v. (upholding preliminary injunction that preserved status quo for resolution on the merits). Finally, the Attorney General argues that applicants who contest the conditions may file their own lawsuits while jurisdictions that do not contest the conditions may receive immediate funding conditions while by the acceding appeal is to the notice pending. and access Considering that thirty-seven cities and counties have signed on as amicus curiae in support of the City, judicial economy counsels against requiring all these jurisdictions (and potentially others) to file their own lawsuits to decide the same legal question before this Court. (See, generally, ECF No. 51, Brief of Amici Curiae County of Santa Clara, 36 Additional Cities, Counties and Municipal Agencies, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, the National - 11 - Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 12 of 17 PageID #:1389 League of Cities, International the National Municipal Association Lawyers of Counties, Association, and the the International City/County Management Association (“Amicus Brief of Counties, Cities, and Others”).) Furthermore, all jurisdictions remain free to adopt the substance of the notice and access conditions if they wish to do so. only prevents the Attorney General conditions on the Byrne JAG funds. from The injunction imposing them as If, however, the Attorney General wishes to reserve his right to tether the notice and access conditions to eligibility for these funds, he must await a decision that upholds his authority to do so. Although not specifically raised by the Attorney General, there are injunction. reasons to be cautious when imposing a nationwide Recent legal scholarship has identified significant concerns related to the use of nationwide injunctions at the district court and circuit court levels. See, generally, Samuel L. Bray, Multiple Chancellors: Reforming the National Injunction (February 9, 2017) (forthcoming publication), available at SSRN:; Michael T. Morley, De Facto Class Actions? Plaintiff- and Defendant-Oriented Injunctions in Voting Rights, Election Law, and Other Constitutional Cases, 39 Harv. J.L. & Pub. Pol’y 487 (2016); Maureen Carroll, Aggregation for Me, but Not for Thee: The Rise of Common Claims in Non- 12 - Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 13 of 17 PageID #:1390 Class Litigation, 36 Cardozo L. Rev. 2017 (2015). injunctions may increase forum shopping, lead to Nationwide conflicting injunctions, and stymie the development of the law within the Circuits prior to Supreme Court review. These concerns are not insignificant but fail to overcome the benefits of a nationwide injunction in this specific instance. First and foremost, there has been no evidence of forum shopping here and neither party has argued as such. Second, as explained above, judicial economy favors avoiding “a flood of duplicative litigation” from other Byrne JAG applicants who want the same protections as the City of Chicago. Nat’l Mining Ass’n v. United States Army Corps of Eng’rs, 145 F.3d 1399, 1409 (D.C. Cir. 1998). Certainly, it would at least include the thirty-seven cities and counties that filed briefs in support of the City of Chicago as amici. See, ECF No. 51, Amicus Brief of Counties, Cities, and Others; see also, A-1 Cigarette Vending, Inc. v. U.S., 49 Fed. Cl. 345, 358 (2001) (“It would be senseless to require the relitigation of the validity of a regulation in all federal district courts”). Nevertheless, issuing a nationwide injunction should not be a default approach. It is an extraordinary remedy that should be limited by the nature of the constitutional violation and subject to prudent use by the courts. See, Califano v. Yamaski, 442 U.S. 682, 702 (1979) (noting - 13 - that injunctive relief is Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 14 of 17 PageID #:1391 limited to the “extent of the violation established”). In this case, the Court finds it an appropriate remedy based on the need for federal uniformity and the unfairness resulting from disparate applications. The rule of law is undermined where a court holds that the Attorney General conduct, but jurisdictions is likely nevertheless across the engaging allows country. in legally that The unauthorized conduct Courts in have other a “well- recognized interest in ensuring that federal courts interpret federal law in a uniform way.” 362, 389–90 (2000). Williams v. Taylor, 529 U.S. Further, the public interest and perception of the law supports “having congressional enactments properly interpreted protection and of applied. the public . . . interest As it with is which principally [the court the is] concerned, no artificial restrictions of the court’s power to grant equitable relief in the furtherance of that interest can be acknowledged.” Wirtz v. Baldor Elec. Co., 337 F.2d 518, 534- 35 (D.C. Cir. 1963) (internal quotations and citations omitted). All similarly-situated persons are entitled to similar outcomes under the law, and as a corollary, an injunction that results in unequal treatment of litigants appears arbitrary. See, id. at 534 (“[Where] a lower court . . . has spoken, that court would ordinarily give the same relief to any individual who comes to - 14 - Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 15 of 17 PageID #:1392 it with an essentially similar cause of action. . . . The rule of law requires no less.”); see also, Sandford v. R. L. Coleman Realty Co., 573 F.2d 173, 178 (4th Cir. 1978) (“[T]he settled rule is that whether plaintiff proceeds as an individual or on a class suit basis, the requested injunctive relief generally will benefit not only the claimant but all other persons subject to the practice or the rule under attack.”) (internal quotations and alterations scope would omitted). leave the An injunction Attorney more General restricted free to in continue enforcing the likely invalid conditions against all other Byrne JAG applicants. This state of affairs flies in the face of the rule of law and the role of the courts to ensure the rule of law is enforced. This is especially true considering the judiciary has an important role to play in enforcing the separation of powers. See, NLRB v. Canning, 134 S.Ct. 2550, 2559-60 (2014) (“[T]he separation of powers . . . serve[s] to safeguard individual liberty, and . . . it is the duty of the judicial department — in a separation-of-powers case as in any other — to say what the law is.”) (internal quotations and citations omitted). the court significant, believes it right itself.” may the write underlying injunctive right relief to as be broad “When highly as the Zamecnik v. Indian Prairie Sch. Dist. # 204, 636 - 15 - Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 16 of 17 PageID #:1393 F.3d 874, 879 (7th Cir. 2011) (Posner, J.) (quotations omitted). District courts appropriate Capitol are scope Serv., given of Inc., an broad authority injunction. 756 F.2d to See, 502, determine United 507 (7th States Cir. the v. 1985) (“Geographical limitations regarding the issues at trial do not alter the court’s broad remedial powers.”); Sprogis v. United Air Lines, (affirming Inc., the 444 F.2d “district 1194, court’s 1201-02 power to (7th Cir. consider 1971) extending relief beyond the named plaintiff” “where justice requires such action”). If this Court is incorrect, the appellate process is the vehicle to correct the error. The Court is sympathetic to the Attorney General’s quandary and agrees that, ideally, a final decision on the merits would be reached before practical constraints force a surrender of his policy position (at least for FY 2017). However, this concern is better dealt with through expedited proceedings than a stay that would likely result in imposition conditions on Byrne JAG applicants. Attorney General opposed the of unconstitutional The Court notes that the City’s Motion for Expedited Briefing that would have resulted in an earlier decision on the City’s Motion for a Preliminary Injunction. (See, ECF No. 28, Def.’s Opp. to Pl.’s Mot. to Expedite Briefing Schedule.) - 16 - Case: 1:17-cv-05720 Document #: 98 Filed: 10/13/17 Page 17 of 17 PageID #:1394 Applicants for a stay have a threshold burden to demonstrate both a likelihood of success on the merits and that irreparable harm will result if the stay is denied. Matter of Forty-Eight Insulations, Inc., 115 F.3d at 1300–01. Where the applicant “does not make the requisite showings on either of [the threshold] factors, the court’s inquiry into the balance of harms is unnecessary, and the further analysis.” Id. at 1301. stay should be denied without Because the Attorney General is not able to meet its threshold burden of showing some likelihood of success on its motion to stay nationwide application of the preliminary injunction, no further analysis is necessary. See, ibid. IV. For the reasons CONCLUSION stated herein, the Attorney General’s Motion to Stay Nationwide Application of Preliminary Injunction [ECF No. 80] is denied. IT IS SO ORDERED. Harry D. Leinenweber, Judge United States District Court Dated: October 13, 2017 - 17 -

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