Wen Fa

Attorney Sacramento

Wen Fa is an attorney at PLF’s national headquarters. He has litigated numerous direct-rep cases dealing with private property, equality under the law, school choice, economic liberty, and the First Amendment.

Wen’s clients include Edmund, a black fourth-grade boy who wants the chance to attend the same schools as his white neighbors; Adam, a fifth-generation business owner who wants to sell his artisanal butter to Wisconsin consumers; and Andy, a voter who wants to wear a shirt with the words “don’t tread on me” when he votes.

Wen has promoted liberty through speeches to Tea Party groups and a panel debate at Berkeley Law. Wen has appeared on radio over a dozen times, and has been quoted in Reason Magazine. He has published a scholarly article in the William and Mary Bill of Rights Journal and shorter pieces in newspapers, PLF’s blog, and Fa on First. He is a member of the PLF’s hiring committee and co-manages the summer clerkship program.

Wen holds a Bachelor’s from the University of Texas at Dallas, a Master’s in Political Theory from the London School of Economics, where he studied under libertarian scholar Chandran Kukathas.  Wen graduated from the University of Michigan Law School in 2013, and worked at Human Rights Initiative in Dallas and Institute for Justice in Austin before joining PLF. Wen is licensed to practice law in California, Texas, and several federal courts, including the Supreme Court of the United States.

Wen is the founder of the Sacramento Chapter of America’s Future Foundation, and a board member of the Sacramento Lawyers Chapter of the Federalist Society.

Outside of work, Wen likes to exercise, play sports, and tell jokes.

Minnesota Assoc. Builders and Contractors v. Minneapolis Public School District

Bulldozing unfair, illegal union-rigged construction scheme

With 75 buildings and 35,000 students, there’s plenty of construction work in the Minneapolis School District. But many hardworking Minnesotans never get a shot at a school project. In 2004, the district adopted a project labor agreement, or PLA, that favors politically powerful unions over nonunion contractors. This type of agreement forces ...

Ostrewich v. Trautman

Your shirt or your vote: Fighting to protect free speech at the ballot box

When Jillian Ostrewich entered her Houston, Texas, polling place in 2018, she expected the only decisions she’d face would be on the ballot. Instead, an election judge gave her an ultimatum: turn her shirt inside out or forfeit her vote. Similarly, in 2018, a Dallas-area election judge ordered Tony Ortiz to turn his “MAGA” hat ins ...

Christa McAuliffe PTO v. de Blasio

Stopping New York’s attempt to discriminate against Asian-American students

Feeling that New York City’s eight specialized high schools contain too many Asian students, Mayor Bill de Blasio is changing an admissions program to limit the ability of students to get into predominately Asian-American schools. However, his so-called racial balancing effort will squeeze out Asian students—nearly three-quarters of whom co ...

Rentberry v. City of Seattle

Seattle’s unconstitutional rent-bidding law blocks innovation, free speech

Rentberry is a small San Francisco-based startup that connects landlords and renters through a rent-bidding website. The company hopes to expand its service to Seattle, however city council adopted a one-year moratorium on the service over concerns it might violate existing rental law and might inflate housing costs—despite no evidence that eithe ...

Robinson v. Wentzell

Race-based quotas in Connecticut schools are unconstitutional and hurt Black and Hispanic students

Hartford, Connecticut, runs a number of world-class magnet schools. Their success has led to the use of a lottery to decide who can attend. But under a state-mandated racial quota, enrollment must be at least 25 percent white or Asian. This means Black and Hispanic students are turned away if their admission would push minority enrollment above 75 ...

Vaping Litigation

The Constitution going up in vapor

Electronic nicotine delivery systems—vaping devices and e-cigarettes—first hit U.S. stores in 2007. It didn’t take long for vaping to jump from zero to a $5 billion domestic industry, as entrepreneurs quickly recognized a market hungry for an alternative to traditional cigarettes. In 2016, just as the burgeoning vaping industry was gettin ...

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March 18, 2019

Contractors file civil rights challenge to end cronyism in the North Star State

When a public school district wants to build a new school, should it assign the project to the most qualified bidder or the most politically connected one? That's the question at the forefront of Minnesota ABC v. Minneapolis Public Schools, a civil rights challenge PLF filed this Tuesday. PLF represents merit-shop contractors, who do terrific ...

February 28, 2019

Voters challenge Texas law that forces them to choose between their t-shirt and their vote

This morning, Jillian Ostrewich and Tony Ortiz filed a federal civil rights challenge to a Texas Election Law that forces voters to silence themselves before they can vote. Both voters were harassed by election workers because of what they wore when they went to vote in the midterm elections. Jillian, whose husband is a firefighter, ...

November 30, 2018

Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries: Judge, Jury, and Executioner?

Agencies at every level play an outsized role in everyday life. The FDA imposes nutritional guidelines; the FCC controls what viewers can see on TV. Many other alphabet-soup agencies regulate in many other areas of life. Thus, while many Americans think that it’s Congress that is regulating through legislation, it is usually the agency promul ...

July 13, 2018

It’s time to give children in Hartford the education they deserve

World-class magnet schools in Hartford, Connecticut provide thousands of students with a quality education. The schools also provide hope for scores of minority students in Hartford, who currently attend failing neighborhood schools. Unfortunately, a pernicious Connecticut law, which reserves 25% of magnet school seats for whites and Asians, preven ...

June 14, 2018

Supreme Court polling place dress code decision is victory for free speech

Originally published by The Hill June 14, 2018. In striking down a Minnesota law that bans voters from wearing clothing featuring political views, the Supreme Court has delivered a critical defense of the First Amendment right to free expression. Voters of all political persuasions can now wear shirts expressing their political beliefs — whether ...

June 01, 2018

California agency refuses to comply with California Endangered Species Act

You’d think that California would want to comply with laws that protect the environment. But that’s not always the case. The California Endangered Species Act (CESA) requires the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to conduct status reviews of species listed as threatened or endangered once every five years. The Department has fa ...

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