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OpenMarket: Devin Watkins

  • Ninth Circuit Strikes Down Soda Labeling Ban for Wrong Reasons

    February 1, 2019
    This week the federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held unconstitutional the size requirement in San Francisco’s soda warning labeling regulation. However, there are broader problems with the law that the Ninth Circuit failed to identify.
  • Warren Wealth Tax Proposal Raises Constitutional Questions

    January 25, 2019
    Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has proposed a new wealth tax. We don’t know a lot of details on what is being proposed, but what little we do know suggests there is a constitutional problem. The Washington Post reported yesterday that Warren is being advised by two economists “on a proposal to levy a 2 percent wealth tax on Americans with assets above $50 million, as well as a 3 percent wealth tax on those who have more than $1 billion.”
  • Courts Should Protect Economic Liberty Rights As Originally Understood

    January 23, 2019
    The prohibition on taking a person’s liberty without due process of law is enshrined in the Constitution’s Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments. But what does this mean? Does “liberty” only mean not being imprisoned, as some people have claimed, or is it far broader than that? In a new post on the Federalist Society’s blog, I argue that liberty, as originally understood by our Founders, was far broader than lack of imprisonment.
  • Supreme Court Should Review Oregon's Discriminatory Fuel Pricing Rules

    January 16, 2019
    Last week, American fuel manufactures filed a petition to the U.S. Supreme Court asking them to review a lower court decision upholding an Oregon law which the manufacturers say was designed to inappropriately favor Oregon businesses and which regulates activities that occur entirely outside of the state. CEI has previously commented on the absurdity of the lower court decision when it was issued.
  • Looking Back at the Success of 'Free Enterprise Fund'

    August 10, 2018

    In the last decade there has been a kind of separation of powers renaissance in the courts. Previously, separation-of-powers cases were rare and usually occurred when Congress did something very unusual (like give itself veto powers). But in the last eight years, almost every term of the U.S. Supreme Court has had at least one, and sometimes several, separation of powers cases.

  • Tell the Energy Department What You Think about Your Dishwasher

    May 18, 2018

    Thirty-five years ago, dishwashers cleaned dishes in about an hour. Sadly today, due to federal regulations, there are no dishwashers that do so. This isn’t progress—it’s the failure of the government to allow consumer choice. The Competitive Enterprise Institute has asked the Department of Energy (DOE) to change these regulations, and they are currently considering doing so. To help them decide if the regulations should be changed, the DOE has opened a public comment period until June 25th. You can submit your comments at

  • Liberate Dishwashers from Federal Efficiency Mandates

    March 23, 2018

    Thirty-five years ago dishwashers cleaned dishes in about an hour. Sadly, today there are no dishwashers that do so due to federal government regulations. This isn’t progress, it is the failure of government to allow consumer choice. The Competitive Enterprise Institute this week petitioned the Department of Energy to fix the problem.

  • CEI Asks State Department to Turn Over Records of Contacts with Paris Climate Treaty's Media Cheerleaders

    February 8, 2018

    The Obama State Department pushed the line, via media contacts it called "validators," that the Paris Climate Agreement was not a treaty and didn’t need to be ratified the Senate. CEI has requested information on these “validators” through the Freedom of Information Act.

  • SEC Should Investigate California Municipalities for Climate-Related Securities Fraud

    February 1, 2018

    It appears a variety of California municipalities have gotten themselves in hot water. To investors of their bonds, they have claimed that they are unable to predict sea level rise or other climate risks. But they recently filed suit against a variety of oil and gas companies claiming the companies are causing the sea level to rise. The municipalities in their lawsuits give very explicit predictions as to how much they think the sea level will rise.

  • The First Amendment Protects the Right Not to Speak

    January 30, 2018

    Many local governments are abusing product disclosure mandates because it costs the local government nothing, yet enables them to push an ideological message. This will continue, and get worse, if the Supreme Court doesn’t stop it.

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