South Texas College of Law SCOTUS Clinic Bests Yale Law School SCOTUS Clinic

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday Houston Community College v. Wilson.  As an aside, I want to mention that Rick Morris was the Petitioner’s attorney. He is a South Texas College of Law Houston alum. Rick collaborated closely with South Texas College of Law Houston students throughout the entire case. Justice Gorsuch voted unanimously in favor of their work.

Our students make me very proud.

Respondent, on the other hand, was represented by McDermott Will & Emery and the Yale Law School Supreme Court Clinic. Justice Gorsuch also criticized Respondent’s inability to file a cross-petition.

However, as merits briefing began to unfold, Wilson didn’t just want to defend Fifth Circuit judgment but also wanted to challenge some of it. In particular, Wilson argued that Fifth Circuit was wrong in the way it upheld Board’s nonverbal sanctions as compatible with the First Amendment. However, generally, any respondent seeking to modify a judgment of a lower Court must file and we must approve a cross-petition. Please refer to Genesis HealthCare Corp. v. Symczyk, 569 U. S. 66, 72 (2013). This case did not include a similar petition by Mr. Wilson.We decline to accept his challenge to Fifth Circuit’s decision. The only question we have before us is: Is Mr. Wilson entitled to an actionable First Amendment claim as a result of the Board’s verbal censure.

Perhaps waiver in New Haven is the thing you do when you hand your FedSoc speakers a piece of paper. At the Supreme Court, however, the non-filing of a cross-petition resulted in a 9-0 defeat.

A well-respected Houston law office and South Texas College of Law Houston won the case. Yale Law School was defeated by a globally renowned law firm. The victory is ours. Rick joins other South Texas alumni who have argued before the Supreme Court including Lynne Liberato.