Raymond Kethledge of Michigan has been a judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit since 2008. Before his judicial service, Judge Kethledge served as judiciary counsel to Michigan Senator Spencer Abraham, worked as a partner in two law firms, and worked as an in-house counsel for the Ford Motor Company. Judge Kethledge obtained his law degree from the University of Michigan and clerked for Justice Anthony Kennedy.
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The Tea Party filed a class action against the IRS for targeting conservative political groups. The district court ordered the IRS to disclose lists of those targeted—including information like name, address, and taxpayer identification number. But, the IRS opted to appeal rather than comply. Judge Kethledge, writing for a unanimous court, ordered the IRS to comply. Judge Kethledge held that the personal information of applicants for tax exempt status does not qualify as “return information.” Therefore, the personal information is not protected from discovery by Rule 6103 and the IRS had to comply with the district court’s order.
The EEOC brought a Title VII disparate impact case against Kaplan. But the district court did not qualify the EEOC’s expert. That expert devised a race rater system determining an applicant’s race by using a color copy of an applicant’s driver’s license photo. Judge Kethledge’s majority opinion pheld the district court’s ruling, finding that the EEOC’s expert failed to satisfy Daubert because, among other factors, his methodology had not been tested and he had given no known or potential rate of error for it.
Bennett was hit by a car and sued the driver’s insurance company seeking a declaration that she was entitled to coverage under the driver’s policy. The accident threw Bennett onto the car’s hood, and she argued that language in the policy qualified her as an “occupant” of the car. The policy defined occupying as being “in, on, entering or alighting from” and car. Judge Kethledge held that Bennett qualified as an occupant because she was “on” the car when she was thrown onto its hood.
Michigan passed a law banning public school employers from using their time and treasure to collect union dues. Unions sued, alleging the law violated their First and Fourteenth Amendment rights. Judge Kethledge’s majority opinion held the law didn’t restrict union speech rights at all, and the legislature’s attempt to husband public school resources satisfied rational basis review.
Defendants Carpenter and Sanders were convicted of nine armed robberies in violation of the Hobbs Act. They moved to suppress phone data showing their proximity to the robbery sites at the time of the robberies. The district court denied the motion, and the defendants appealed, arguing that collection of the proximity data constituted a warrantless search in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The Sixth Circuit agreed with the district court because the imprecise locational information that the government obtained differed significantly from the type of unconstitutional GPS monitoring to which defendants sought to compare it.