September 25, 2019

News Alert: Pacific Research Institute & Project for Privacy and Surveillance Accountability File Amicus Brief in Support of Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Xavier Becerra

The Pacific Research Institute and Project for Privacy and Accountability have filed an Amicus brief supporting Americans for Prosperity Foundation (AFP) in its lawsuit against the Attorney General of the State of California, Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Xavier Becerra

The California law in question requires charitable organizations to disclose to the state information on their biggest donors, a requirement the AFP contends endangers the First Amendment rights of donors. 

About the Pacific Research Institute

The Pacific Research Institute (PRI) is a nonprofit nonpartisan 501(c)(3) organization that champions freedom, opportunity, and personal responsibility by advancing free market policy solutions to the issues that impact the daily lives of all Americans. It demonstrates how free interaction among consumers, businesses, and voluntary associations is more effective than government action at providing the important results we all seek—good schools, quality health care, a clean environment, and economic growth. Founded in 1979 and based in San Francisco, PRI is supported by private contributions. Its activities include publications, public events, media commentary, invited legislative testimony, and community outreach.

About the Project for Privacy & Surveillance Accountability

The Project for Privacy & Surveillance Accountability (PPSA) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan 501(c)(4) organization that advocates for greater protection of Americans’ privacy and civil liberties from government surveillance programs. PPSA is concerned with a range of privacy and surveillance issues, from the monitoring and surveillance of American citizens under the guise of foreign intelligence gathering, to the monitoring and surveillance of domestic political activity and association under the guise of federal and state law enforcement


In the petition for a writ of certiorari to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Erik Jaffe, of Schaerr Jaffe LLP argues that allowing the government to collect and access private information concerning political and other activities poses a tremendous danger of political abuse and should be carefully cabined both by statute and by the Constitution.

“The long roster of such abuses of power in the history of American government teaches that it is not unreasonable paranoia but constitutional prudence that should lead us to avoid, wherever possible, giving those in power weapons with which to intimidate or target those who disagree with them,” the brief states. “The First Amendment is one important bulwark against such abuses and the decision below creates cracks in that bulwark that are worthy of this Court’s review.”