The Tenth Circuit on Wednesday issued two published opinions and seven unpublished opinions.
In New Mexico Youth Organized v. Herrera, the Court affirmed the district court’s granting of summary judgment for Respondents, finding that Petitioner Secretary of State of New Mexico’s attempts to regulate the organization was unconstitutional. Attempts to regulate the organization as a political committee was unconstitutional as applied; an expenditure of a determined dollar amount on election-related causes that automatically subjects an organization to reporting as a political political committee is unacceptable where “the major purpose” of the expenditures is not to elect or defeat a candidate.
In United States v. Apollo Energies, Inc., the Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the district court’s decision regarding the scope of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA). Petitioners challenged the application and constitutionality of the statute as strict liability; the MBTA declares it a misdemeanor to “pursue, hunt, take, capture, [or] kill” birds protected by several international treaties, but fails to require any particular mental state or mens rea to violate the statute. The Court determined that to satisfy due process, Petitioners must have proximately caused the harm to the protected birds and have had sufficient notice that their conduct was in violation of the MBTA.