Daily Kos- by invisiblewoman
Fri Apr 01, 2011 at 05:20 PM EDT
From Mr. Fantastic and the Invisible Woman comes this sweet tidbit of joy, courtesy of Wispolitics:
Bargaining bill restraining order remains in effect; DA rests case Judge Maryann Sumi’s temporary restraining order against the implementation of the collective bargaining bill will remain in effect indefinitely.
The plaintiff in the case, Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne, rested his side of the case this afternoon, but Sumi said she could not set a date to take more testimony because the GOP legislators named as defendants in the case are still covered under legislative immunity.
Assistant AG Maria Lazar had asked for the restraining order to be vacated, arguing the hearing could not conclude without the participation of defendants Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, Senate President Mike Ellis, Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald and Assembly Majority Leader Scott Suder.
But Sumi said that just as those lawmakers are entitled to their day in court, they are also not entitled to the suspension of the current restraining order.
“It remains in effect until further order of the court,” Sumi said, adding that she doesn’t know when that will be. The judge said the defendants in question could waive their immunity, allow their attorneys to move forward without them or wait until their immunity expires.
Bob Jambois, attorney for Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca, responded that if those lawmakers “find this to be an inconvenience,” they would still be able to pass the bill again with 24 hours notice of a conference committee hearing and legislative sessions.
Sumi requested briefs from both sides on seeking declaratory judgment, the nature of indispensible parties in the case and time limits for service of process while immunity is in effect. That brief is due April 25 for the district attorney’s office, followed by defendants’ briefs on May 16 and a reply from the DA on May 23
Here it is constant reader. While there are many balls in the air here, the truth of the matter is simple. The fact of a quantifiable, possibly illegal action borne of an illegally held meeting (relative to open meeting laws) has led to an indefinite delay!
Complicating the matter for the GOP hucksters is the fact (read the stuff above from WisPo) that the four GOP Senators named in the TRO all held onto their immunity right, and refused to appear. Had they waived their right like Barca this thing could have been ruled on TODAY, and it could have waltzed its way into a higher court. Once again, the petty tactics and desire to trick an manipulate process and people has led to a greater potential for their undoing.
Ain’t Karma GREAT?
Essentially, if I understand this correctly, at a MINIMUM, Sumi won’t be able to put together another hearing until 5/23…probably longer. In the meantime, we have at least two other hearings upcoming: one a collective suit by the unions challenging the constitutionality of Act 10 and another hearing/suit regarding over whether it is a fiscal bill or not. Also, we have the potential to seat a POSSIBLY friendly SC Justice AND growing unpopularity of the GOP. Between all these factors, even IF the GOP could put together a new bill and do it by the book, I seriously doubt that they would have the votes anymore.
Again…. Ain’t Karma GREAT?