Case: Center for Constitutional Rights v. Obama

3:07-cv-01115 | U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California

Filed Date: Jan. 17, 2006

Closed Date: 2013

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On January 17, 2006, the Center for Constitutional Rights and five of its attorneys who represented clients suspected of involvement with terrorist organizations, filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against the National Security Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency, Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Homeland Security, and Federal Bureau of Investigation. The plaintiffs originally sought an injunction that would prohibit the government from c…

On January 17, 2006, the Center for Constitutional Rights and five of its attorneys who represented clients suspected of involvement with terrorist organizations, filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against the National Security Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency, Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Homeland Security, and Federal Bureau of Investigation. The plaintiffs originally sought an injunction that would prohibit the government from conducting warrantless surveillance of communications in the U.S, claiming that such surveillance violated the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act ("FISA"), the Separation of Powers doctrine, and the First and Fourth Amendments. Plaintiffs based these allegations primarily upon statements by President George W. Bush and other government officials in December 2005 admitting that the NSA had monitored, without a warrant, communications between the U.S. and a foreign country where one of the parties was believed to be a member or affiliate of al-Qa'ida. FISA explicitly authorized electronic surveillance for the purposes of collecting foreign intelligence only upon orders issued by federal judges on a special court.

By January 2007, the government claimed to have shut down the surveillance program, having received approval from a FISA Court judge to carry out the same surveillance pursuant to court order. (On re-application, it seems that another FISA Court judge disagreed; the threatened end of the program led to the enactment first of the Protect America Act and then the FISA Amendments Act, in 2007 and 2008, respectively; these allowed the surveillance in question.) There remained, however, one final set of claims not affected by the end of the non-FISA surveillance program: the plaintiffs asked the Court to order the government to destroy any records of surveillance of the plaintiffs. The government argued that the plaintiffs lacked standing because they lacked evidence that they had actually been surveilled.

In late 2006, the Multi District Litigation (MDL) Panel transferred the case to the Northern District of California to be consolidated with the Multi District Litigation. On February 23, 2007, the Panel consolidated the case with the MDL, In Re National Security Agency Telecommunications Records Litigation, NS-CA-11, in this Clearinghouse. For information about what happened while the case was a part of the consolidation see NS-CA-0004.

Ultimately, on January 31, 2011, the District Court (Judge Vaughn R. Walker) granted summary judgment in favor of the government. The Court held that the plaintiffs had failed to establish standing for any of their claims. The plaintiffs appealed.

On June 12, 2013, Judge McKeown wrote for the Ninth Circuit and affirmed the district court's dismissal. In re Nat'l Sec. Agency Telecommunications Records Litig., 522 F. App'x 383 (9th Cir. 2013). The Court of Appeals relied on the Supreme Court's decision in Clapper v. Amnesty International, (133 S. Ct. 1138 (2013)), NS-NY-0006, in this Clearinghouse. On November 1, 2013, The Ninth Circuit denied rehearing, and on March 19, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court denied certiorari review. The case is therefore done.

Summary Authors

Michael Mirdamadi (10/20/2013)

Jessica Kincaid (7/7/2014)

Related Cases

Hepting v. AT&T, Northern District of California (2006)

Shubert v. Obama, Northern District of California (2006)

In re National Security Agency Telecommunications Records Litigation, Northern District of California (2006)

Jewel v. National Security Agency, Northern District of California (2008)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/5798119/parties/center-for-constitutional-rights-v-bush/


Judge(s)

Walker, Vaughn R. (California)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Avery, Michael (Massachusetts)

Cole, David (District of Columbia)

Goodman, William Harry (New York)

Hafetz, Jonathan L. (New York)

Kadidal, Shayana (New York)

Ratner, Michael (New York)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Berman, Marcia (District of Columbia)

Coppolino, Anthony J. (District of Columbia)

Haas, Alexander K (District of Columbia)

Judge(s)

Walker, Vaughn R. (California)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Avery, Michael (Massachusetts)

Cole, David (District of Columbia)

Goodman, William Harry (New York)

Hafetz, Jonathan L. (New York)

Kadidal, Shayana (New York)

Ratner, Michael (New York)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Berman, Marcia (District of Columbia)

Coppolino, Anthony J. (District of Columbia)

Haas, Alexander K (District of Columbia)

Other Attorney(s)

Barbur, Peter T. (New York)

Daignault, Ronald Marc (New York)

Klear, Jennifer Alison (New York)

Scanlon, Vera M. (New York)

Valliere, Timothy Alfred (New York)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket [PACER]

Center for Constitutional Rights v. Bush

April 18, 2011 Docket
1-1

Complaint

Center for Constitutional Rights v. Bush

Jan. 16, 2007 Complaint
51

Order (Granting Defedants' Motion for Summary Judgment and Denying Plaintiffs' Motion for Summary Judgment)

Center for Constitutional Rights v. Bush

Jan. 31, 2011 Order/Opinion
52

Judgment

Center for Constitutional Rights v. Bush

Feb. 15, 2011 Order/Opinion

Resources

Title Description External URL

CCR v. Obama (formerly CCR v. Bush)

Center for Constitutional Rights

In December 2005, the New York Times broke the story that, for more than four years, the NSA had engaged in a widespread program of warrantless electronic surveillance of telephone calls and emails, … March 3, 2014 https://ccrjustice.org/home/what-we-do/our-cases/ccr-v-obama-formerly-ccr-v-bush

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/5798119/center-for-constitutional-rights-v-bush/

Last updated May 12, 2022, 8 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
10

STIPULATION AND ORDER re 9 AS MODIFIED BY THE COURT: On 7/6/2007, Plaintiffs in CCR will file a response to the Govt's submission and their own supplemental points and authority in support of their position on their motion. Defendants will file a reply brief no later than 7/19/2007. Hearing is scheduled for 8/9/2007 at 2:00 PM. Signed by Chief Judge Vaughn R Walker on 6/28/2007. (cgk, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 6/28/2007)

June 28, 2007 RECAP
17

STIPULATION AND ORDER re 15 filed by Department of Homeland Security, Defense Intelligence Agency, John D. Negroponte, Central Intelligence Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigation, National Security Agency, George W. Bush. The page limit on Plainti ffs' Supplemental Memorandum filed on 7/9/2007 shall be extended to the length of 26 pages of text. The page limit on Defendants' Supplemental Reply Memorandum shall be extended to 20 pages. Signed by Chief Judge Vaughn R Walker on 7/24/2007. (cgk, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 7/24/2007)

July 24, 2007 RECAP
21

ORDER setting briefing schedule on plaintiffs' motion to supplement complaint. Signed by Judge VRW on 9/5/07. (vrwlc3, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 9/5/2007)

Sept. 5, 2007 RECAP
31

ORDER. The parties are directed to submit to the court, on or before 2/26/2010, a joint status report advising the court of the status of this case, what proceedings are necessary to resolve it and proposing a tentative schedule for such proceedings if applicable. Signed by Chief Judge Vaughn R Walker on 1/20/2010. (cgk, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 1/20/2010)

Jan. 20, 2010 RECAP
42

REVISED STIPULATION AND ORDER re doc 41 . Plaintiffs file an opposition to Defendants' renewed motion and renew Plaintiffs' cross-motion for summary judgment by 7/22/2010. Defendants file a reply and file an opposition to Plaintiffs cross-motion by 9/2/2010. Plaintiffs may file a cross-reply by 9/23/2010. Signed by Judge Vaughn R Walker on 6/21/2010. (cgk, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 6/21/2010)

June 21, 2010 RECAP

State / Territory: California

Case Type(s):

National Security

Special Collection(s):

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act -- All Matters

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act -- Telephony Metadata

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act—Internet Metadata

Key Dates

Filing Date: Jan. 17, 2006

Closing Date: 2013

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

A non-profit legal advocacy organization and five of its attorneys that represented clients who are suspected of having some link to terrorist organizations.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR)

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

National Security Agency (Washington), Federal

Defense Intelligence Agency (Washington), Federal

Central Intelligence Agency (Washington), Federal

Department of Homeland Security (Washington), Federal

Federal Bureau of Investigation (Washington), Federal

Defendant Type(s):

Jurisdiction-wide

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.

Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201

Constitutional Clause(s):

Unreasonable search and seizure

Freedom of speech/association

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Non-settlement Outcome

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Defendant

Nature of Relief:

None

Source of Relief:

None

Issues

General:

Confidentiality

Record-keeping

Terrorism/Post 9-11 issues

Type of Facility:

Government-run