This is one in a series of posts designed to describe court decisions in plain English. For more detail and background on the legal issues, see the link to the case below. For similar posts, click here.
SCOTUSblog: Wood v. Moss
Issue: The questions before the Court are (1) whether the court of appeals erred in denying qualified immunity to Secret Service agents protecting the president by evaluating the claim of viewpoint discrimination at a high level of generality and concluding that pro- and anti-Bush demonstrators needed to be positioned an equal distance from the President while he was dining on the outdoor patio and then while he was travelling by motorcade; and (2) whether respondents have adequately pleaded viewpoint discrimination in violation of the First Amendment when no factual allegations support their claim of discriminatory motive and there was an obvious security-based rationale for moving the nearby anti-Bush group and not the farther-away pro-Bush group.
Holding: In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court ruled that the agents were entitled to qualified immunity.