Daniel M. Ortner

Attorney Sacramento

Daniel M. Ortner joined Pacific Legal Foundation in the fall of 2018, focusing on the First Amendment, property rights, economic liberty, and curtailing the overreach of the administrative state.

Daniel graduated Summa Cum Laude and first in his class from the J. Reuben Clark Law School at Brigham Young University. He comes to  Pacific Legal Foundation after two appellate clerkships on the Utah Supreme Court and the Third Circuit Federal Court of Appeals. Daniel is grateful to have been mentored by incredible jurists with a passion for originalism and for bringing empirical tools such as corpus linguistics to bear on statutory interpretation. He has also published extensively on First Amendment topics including freedom of speech, freedom of association, and free exercise of religion.

Daniel was born in Israel and moved to the United States at a young age. He is grateful for the incredible blessings of liberty that he has enjoyed in the United States and particularly for the freedoms to think, speak, worship, and associate that are guaranteed by the Constitution.

Outside of work, Daniel spends time with his wife and two beautiful daughters. He loves to play board games, watch movies, and serve in his local church congregation.

Daniel is currently licensed to practice in the Commonwealth of Virginia as well as the Fifth, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits. He is not yet licensed in California.

Cases

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May 20, 2019

The Hill: The slippery slope of trying to curb ‘extremist’ speech

This article was originally published by The Hill on May 20, 2019. The world watched in horror as a deranged killer live-streamed himself murdering Muslims attending two mosques in New Zealand. In the wake of the shooting, many have called for tighter restrictions on "extremist" speech by government. The leaders of New Zealand and France have dra ...

April 30, 2019

Protecting Private Water Rights is in the Public Interest

In the arid west, water is the lifeblood of the region. Stability and security are at a particular premium because individuals and businesses need to know how much water they can rely on in order to make productive use of scarce resources. Accordingly, water rights are some of the most valuable property rights that individuals ...

April 22, 2019

PLF to Supreme Court: Choose freedom rather than religious discrimination

Few people would argue that parents shouldn't be able to decide how and where to educate their children. But the state of Montana is doing just that. When Kathy and Jerry Armstrong's son entered middle school, they felt their local public schools did not adequately nurture the values and character traits they wanted for their ...

April 22, 2019

San Antonio Express-News: S.A. and Chick-fil-A shows why free speech matters

This article was originally published by San Antonio Express-News on April 21, 2019. The foundations of freedom of speech are under relentless assault. A case in point: the San Antonio City Council recently voted to exclude Chick-fil-A from the city's airport because the restaurant chain's Christian owners have donated to organizations that champio ...

February 08, 2019

PLF to the City of Boston: Let Freedom Fly!

The residents of Boston come from a diverse array of cultural, ethnic, social, and religious backgrounds. To help celebrate and commemorate the City's diversity, Boston allows private groups to fly flags on one of the City's flagpoles next to Boston's City Hall building. The City has allowed a wide array of groups to use the ...

January 08, 2019

Grassroots political participation is under attack in Utah and GOP is fighting back

Originally published by The Hill, January 8, 2019. If you want to understand the importance of grassroots volunteers in a democracy, spend some time working political campaigns and party activities at the state and local levels. I experienced this lesson firsthand when I got involved with the Utah Republican Party as a law student. But ...

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