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Doe v. Reed

United States Supreme Court
130 S.Ct. 2811, 561 U.S. 186 (2010)


In Washington, 4 percent of the state’s voters are needed to place a referendum on an election ballot, and the petition must include the signers’ names and addresses. The petitions are then submitted to Washington’s secretary of state for validation. Under the Washington Public Records Act (PRA), private parties can request a copy of government documents, including referendum petitions. Two advocacy groups (defendants) requested copies pursuant to the PRA of a petition that called for a referendum for a law extending benefits to same-sex marriage. State voters (plaintiffs) who signed the petition with their names and addresses objected to the request, arguing that disclosure of their information would violate their First Amendment rights.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Roberts, J.)

Concurrence (Scalia, J.)

Concurrence (Sotomayor, J.)

Dissent (Thomas, J.)

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