United States District Court, D. Montana, Missoula Division
ORDER, AND FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATION
JEREMIAH C. LYNCH UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Chris Walters, appearing pro se, has filed a document titled
“Amicus Curiae Brief on Constitutionality of Social
Security Act, Medicaid, and Federal Budget 2018” - a
document which the Court liberally construes as a complaint.
And Walters moves for leave to proceed in forma pauperis
under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a).
can grant an individual leave to proceed in forma pauperis if
the individual sufficiently establishes via affidavit that he
cannot pay court costs without hindering his ability to
provide the necessities of life for himself. Adkins v.
E.I. Du Pont de Nemours & Co., 335 U.S. 331, 339
(1948). Because Walters has made the requisite showing, his
motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis is properly
granted. IT IS SO ORDERED.
juncture, the Court is obligated to examine Walters'
complaint to determine whether the Court possesses
jurisdiction over the subject matter of the claims advanced
by Walters' complaint. See Collins v. U.S.
Citizenship and Immigration Services, 820 F.3d 1096,
1099 (9th Cir. 2016) (recognizing the court has an
independent obligation to determine whether subject matter
reasons discussed below, it is recommended that this action
be dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
federal question jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1331,
Walters asserts two purported federal claims, naming as
defendant President Donald Trump. (Doc. 2.)
support of his first claim, Walters asserts the
“Federal Budget for 2018” as apparently proposed
by the President calls for “cuts in Social Security
Disability, Medicaid [and] Medicare.” (Doc. 2 at
1-2.) From this anticipatory concern, Walters
asks the Court to consider whether any proposed reduction in
benefits already awarded under these programs to individuals
through administrative or judicial proceedings would violate
the separation of powers embodied in Article I-III of the
United States Constitution. (Doc. 2 at 2.) Although not
expressly asserted in his complaint, it is assumed for
purposes of analysis that Walters is currently receiving
benefits under at least one of the referenced programs.
his second claim for relief, Walters implicitly asks the
Court to declare that the authority to administer the three
referenced programs be placed in the hands of a
“special master” to assure that the benefits
currently being enjoyed by beneficiaries under the programs
will not be diminished by anticipatory budget cuts. (Doc. 2
threshold question to be answered is whether Walters'
complaint presents a case or controversy as required to
establish jurisdiction under Article III of the United States
Constitution. The case or controversy requirement is designed
to “limit the business of federal courts to questions
presented in an adversary context and in a form historically
viewed as capable of resolution through the judicial
process.” Flast v. Cohen, 392 U.S. 83, 95
(1968). “Justiciability is the term of art employed to
give expression to this dual limitation placed upon federal
courts by the case-and-controversy doctrine.”
Id. No justiciable controversy exists when the
particular case at hand is simply asking for an advisory
opinion. Id. (citations omitted). “For
adjudication of constitutional issues ‘concrete legal
issues, presented in actual cases, not abstractions' are
requisite.” Golden v. Zwickler, 394 U.S. 103,
108 (1969) (quoting United Public Workers of American
(CIO.) v. Mitchell, 330 U.S. 75, 89 (1947)). Ultimately,
the question to be asked in a particular case “is
whether the facts alleged, under all the circumstances, show
that there is a substantial controversy, between parties
having adverse legal interests, of sufficient immediacy an[d]
reality to warrant the issuance of a declaratory
judgment.” Id. at 959-60 (quoting Maryland
Casualty Co. v. Pacific Coal & Oil Co., 312 U.S.
270, 273 (1941)).
obvious reasons, Walters' claims fail to present a
justiciable controversy. His claims are based upon potential
future events which may or may not happen, and thus lack the
requisite immediacy and reality necessary to invoke federal
on the foregoing, IT IS RECOMMENDED that this action be
dismissed for lack of jurisdiction. IT IS FURTHER RECOMMENDED
that Walters' two pending ...