Daniel A. Horwitz Profile picture
Constitutional litigator and civil libertarian. Public interest/First Amendment/innocence litigation. Nashville politics. Law firm website at: https://t.co/QCIsH9dK0c
Atom of Eden Profile picture 1 added to My Authors
16 Jun
Ah yes, “passes away” is definitely how one would reasonably describe being killed by tasing.
Imagine writing this after your department tases a guy to death. Image
Are you under the impression that his failure to speak clearly (he was deaf, btw) caused his death, or was your bad tweet a side effect of licking boots?

Read 6 tweets
12 Jun
The automatic stay is so stupid and susceptible to pervasive abuse.
It also assumes, often wrongly, that the sole purpose of civil claims is to obtain money or property.
Very solid intro here, though: opn.ca6.uscourts.gov/opinions.pdf/2…
Read 4 tweets
12 Jun
I have argued for years that huge chunks of our Establishment Clause jurisprudence are exposed by the simple fact that if you switched the word “God” in whatever prayer, symbol, etc. people claim is perfectly fine to “Allah,” the very same people would have a fucking aneurysm.
This is also the most unintentionally funny news clip I’ve seen in awhile. They introduce Mr. Dumb Dumb by claiming that the charge that he “melted down” about this was “clickbait,” and he responds by launching right into demanding a(n obviously baseless) criminal investigation.
“It’s also illegal [@BadLegalTakes] and in violation of federal [@BadLegalTakes] and state [@BadLegalTakes] laws.”
Read 9 tweets
8 Jun
For the eleventy billionth time, deciding what speech you want to carry and what speech you want to exclude is an *exercise* of the First Amendment—not a violation of it—and “amending Section 230” won’t alter that reality, because the First Amendment itself protects that right.
Their angle is that while Facebook, Twitter, Google, and other behemoths can afford the compliance costs of Section 230 reform, their would-be competitors can’t. Regulating the competition out of business is a tactic as old as time.
We can always have this unhinged lunatic again.
Read 5 tweets
25 May
I should note: The problem here is not retroactivity. The Board of Parole just needs to use its uncontroversial, existing authority to give new hearing dates to anyone who is presumptively entitled to release under this new law, which they refuse to do.
To illustrate by example: There are people who will become presumptively entitled to release in July 2021. Many of those people won't be given a parole hearing until 2022 or beyond, though, which means they won't be released for years. That's a BOP choice.
Read 4 tweets
20 May
Ok folks, let’s talk about constitutional litigation for a second, since some of you are pretty confused about it.

lawandcrime.com/high-profile/t…
To begin, while the vast majority of laws are presumed (and are) constitutional, that presumption flips—dramatically—in certain contexts. Generally speaking, compelling people to say things that they don’t want to say is one of those contexts.
It’s that flipped presumption—where the Government has to meet the burden of proving that a law is constitutional—that leads to cases like this: tennessean.com/story/news/201…
Read 22 tweets
19 May
How would you feel if your jurisdiction passed a law compelling you to post your policy on misunderstanding the compelled speech doctrine?
Of course I have an answer to this extremely easy question, which was lower in the thread, but if you want more than that you can pay my retainer.
Good thing for plaintiffs that the relevant standard isn't "whether @AaronWorthing sees a viewpoint being compelled," then.
Read 4 tweets
18 May
Are you a business owner with bathrooms who doesn’t want to do this? If so, please feel free to reach out.
Here’s the text, btw, for anyone who has only seen the reporting on the bill but not the bill itself: capitol.tn.gov/Bills/112/Bill…
Let me also just note that the definition of “restroom” is, uh, rather broad:
Read 10 tweets
7 May
This tweet belongs in a museum.
Make sure you get the “Twitter for iPhone” part in, it completes the triple crown.
Relatedly, for anyone who missed it earlier this week, I injured myself laughing at this clip:
Read 4 tweets
6 May
It’s my understanding that this is the final text of the new Chancery “super court.” Unless I’m missing something, this is not that big a deal? It’s largely purposeless, sure, but this is a pretty modest change, particularly compared with what was initially proposed.
The folks who pushed this are going to be *shocked* to learn that the problem with their laughably unconstitutional shit was not, in fact, the county where suit is filed.
Relatedly (and I don’t have a great way to verify this), I would be pretty surprised to learn that more than a handful qualifying cases are filed each year. So I guess the 5-10 of us who file these kinds of cases regularly will get our own little special panel thing.
Read 4 tweets
5 May
I have thought about this for years, and I am finally at the point where I’m completely convinced: There should be full and automatic fee shifting to prevailing parties in all litigation between private litigants.
Many. And their recoveries would have been larger and faster if big corporations and insurance companies had to worry about paying my fees.
Additional, related note: It would also make financial sense to represent individuals with low-damages cases against large corporations and insurance companies if you could win a fee-shift. Right now, it makes no financial sense at all.
Read 31 tweets
29 Apr
This thread is (unsurprisingly) valuable and correct and good, and you should read it. I’m just chiming in to note that:

(1) Intros are not just for briefs! They are valuable in complaints, too.

(2) Readers often don’t read stuff in a single sitting, so the intro helps orient.
I get lots of love for my intros (see, e.g., ), so to the extent they’re useful to anyone, I’ll link some of my favorites below. Also note: Most courts don’t ask for intros or require them. To quote Judge Sutton: “But the rules don’t prohibit them, either.”
My view on intros has always been that in addition to providing a road map for what follows, they should quickly introduce and then hammer home your strongest argument right upfront. Here’s the intro from the Ludye Wallace case, for instance: horwitz.law/wp-content/upl….
Read 8 tweets
28 Apr
I’ve picked up a ton of new followers recently (Welcome! Sorry in advance!), so just to introduce myself and give you a sense of what I do, here’s a brief thread. Or you can just click the link down here👇 (tba.org/index.cfm?pg=L…) and be current through early 2018:
I file lawsuits that some people might call crazy against bad actors who never expect to be sued and do things like institute inmate sterilization programs: tennessean.com/story/news/201…
I do actual innocence work: nytimes.com/2020/11/12/us/…
Read 18 tweets
27 Apr
A lawsuit has just been filed against District Attorney Ray Crouch, @dicksonpolice, and many @TBInvestigation officials regarding their malicious prosecution and false arrest of Joshua Garton for posting a meme that offended law enforcement: horwitz.law/wp-content/upl… My statement: ImageImageImage
The background on this outrageous prosecution is here: lawandcrime.com/crazy/constitu…. I’m confident @TBIJoshDeVine will have a comment if you ask him for one.

@cjciaramella @LambeJerry @NC5_NickBeres @tbroker23 @Popehat
Read 13 tweets
26 Feb
Having spent a little bit of time looking into this, I can confidently say: This is bogus and legally impermissible. A brief thread on the issue, and why.
Here's the removal provision of the Tennessee Constitution. If you think it appears to contemplate removal of a judge for cause only, you are right.
In 1899, the issue was presented to the Tennessee Supreme Court in McCulley v. State, 53 S.W. 134, 137 (Tenn. 1899). The case involved whether, under Article 6, § 6, the General Assembly could, "for economic reasons, [] remove a judge whose office is still in existence."
Read 14 tweets
25 Feb
1. This is outrageous. She is the best judge in Tennessee.

2. She was only reversed in part. The balance of the case was conceded by the State during oral argument.

3. These fuckers had absolutely nothing to say about a judge who created an inmate sterilization program.
.@TimRudd34 should really stick to his two principal areas of expertise: hating gay people and ordering fries with that.
Interfering with the independence of the judiciary is not “cancel culture” you insufferable fucking moron.
Read 15 tweets
24 Feb
Every time I see a document that details attorneys’ hourly rates—information that is often very closely guarded, because the market for legal services is fucked up and broken—I am shocked and horrified by the hourly rates some people are charging. 100% success rate, never fails.
Sorry, forgot the hashtag and the gif:

#BigLawRefugeesWelcome
For context—and this is not an exaggeration—the people I’m talking about will bill $7k in an afternoon without blinking. But amen, it’s fucked at every level, in every practice area.
Read 4 tweets
4 Dec 20
This twist where all of the shittiest Trump supporters decide to eat one another was honestly better than anything I could ever have hoped for.
Seriously is there any way to buy tickets to support all of this or something
Yeah, you tell ‘em Ms. Poopy Pants! Own those libs!
Read 7 tweets
3 Dec 20
Holy shit that Pam Anderson interview on @WSMV was wild. She also claims, remarkably, to have had “a dedicated and stellar career.” Yet every defense attorney in this city knows she’s a snake.
Hope @JFinleyreports asks for copies of all of her secret on-the-job recordings. Those are public records, and there’s no way it’s her first time.
For the record, and to be very clear, when she refers derisively to “@JoyKimbrough4’s base,” what Pam Anderson means is black people.
Read 5 tweets
2 Dec 20
Find the flaw (it doesn’t exist, and the contrary conclusion is ridiculous): tncourts.gov/sites/default/… ImageImageImage
Are you a prosecutor? Are you nervous that a claimed constitutional violation will vacate not only a sentence, but also a guilty defendant’s conviction? Do you want to protect a victim by settling the case under favorable terms before a ruling? If so, this decision sucks for you. Image
Courts’ reflexive position that prosecutors only have discretion to be punitive is a separate problem. It’s just not correct. And don’t get me started on the outrageously disparate ways that the State and defendants are treated on appeal.
Read 4 tweets
25 Nov 20
Let me put this in clear terms: The Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility protects judicial misbehavior like this by actively targeting lawyers who speak out against judges, thereby deterring them from blowing the whistle. It is not an accident.
"How could this have gone on for five years without anyone saying anything," you might wonder? Don't. Lawyers who speak out against judicial misbehavior are punished for doing so. That's why nobody said anything.
I’ve spent years complaining about this. It’s a massive problem. The fact that the BPR—which recently attempted to expand its speech-policing authority—comes down hard on people who criticize judges but not bigotry is deliberate. Sandy Garrett needs to go. scotblog.org/2019/06/the-te…
Read 4 tweets