The U.S. Chamber filed an amicus brief seeking reversal of a district court’s decision to uphold an ordinance that violates the First Amendment. The regulation, promulgated by the City and County of San Francisco, requires advertisers who post an ad for sugar-sweetened beverages to include a warning that occupies “at least 20% of the area” of the ad, stating: “WARNING: Drinking beverages with added sugar(s) contributes to obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay. This is a message from the City and County of San Francisco.”
The brief argued that, as a content-based speech regulation that forces private actors to discourage the use of their own products, the ordinance is subject to strict scrutiny—and does not survive. In addition, the brief explained that the ordinance also fails under lesser forms of First Amendment scrutiny.
Bert W. Rein, Megan L. Brown, and Jeremy J. Broggi of Wiley Rein LLP served as counsel for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on behalf of the U.S. Chamber Litigation Center.