Arizona Eagletarian

Arizona Eagletarian

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Redistricting -- AZ Supremes deny bid for review

On May 7th, Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery's office (acting on behalf of the State of Arizona) filed a Petition for Transfer to the state Supreme Court of its appeal of Judge Dean Fink's ruling in the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission Open Meeting case.

You may recall that last fall, Judge Fink (in Maricopa County Superior Court) ruled that provision for Open Meetings in the Arizona Constitution, as amended by voters when the AIRC was established, supersedes the statutory Open Meeting Law.

Montgomery, immediately after Fink's ruling, announced his intent to appeal. In due course, the appeal and the AIRC response were filed in the Arizona Court of Appeals.

This petition for transfer cites:

The issue presented – the applicability of the Arizona Open Meeting Law to the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission -- is an important issue of statewide impact. The previous matter involving the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission matter was identified by this Court as a “high profile” matter. Moreover, the implementation of the Commission’s decisions is proceeding apace, and may affect the Fall 2012 elections. (emphasis mine).

ARCAP [Arizona Rules of Civil Appellate Procedure]19(a) (3) provides that an appeal may be transferred to the Supreme Court where “[a]ny other extraordinary circumstances justifying transfer.” Those circumstances include the substantial statewide importance of interpretation of the Constitution and Arizona’s open meeting laws and the consequent need to decide this matter expeditiously. (again, emphasis mine)

It appears that Mr. Montgomery, when this petition was filed (May 7) either was coordinating an effort -- with Liburdi/Cantelme/Hauser regarding the maps which had been approved by the AIRC and precleared by the US Department of Justice -- to get those maps disqualified for use for this year's elections OR was throwing a desperate Hail Mary pass hoping to throw a wrench into the works even if not coordinating the effort with the attorneys representing the tea partisans.

Given that we now know that Maricopa County Elections officials intended to intervene in the tea partisans' lawsuits, to stop any effort to block the maps for this year, one simply has to wonder just WHO Montgomery's office represents.

Today, the Arizona Supreme Court denied (see page 2 of the linked pdf, re: T-12-0002-CV) Montgomery's petition for transfer without any comment.


Exhibits filed with the Petition to Transfer the case to Supreme Court are found at these links: Exhibit A, Exhibit B and Exhibit C.

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