The Supreme Court responded Wednesday to an April request by the Department of Justice for the judicial body to review the legal issues surrounding the alleged open meetings violation and has decided to hold oral arguments.
The original request made by the DOJ on behalf of Administration Secretary Mike Huebsch and the State of Wisconsin was filed April 7. The Supreme Court’s May 4 response said the body would begin oral arguments on June 6, but first the Court wanted the parties to the case to answer a series of questions due to the Court on May 23.
The first set includes issues raised by the DOJ’s initial request, like whether a court can restrain actions necessary for laws to become effective and whether an alleged open meetings violation was grounds for a court to void the consequent act.
The Supreme Court also wanted each party to answer six other questions, including if any party claim legislative immunity, as all five Republican defendants had done in the past.
Defendant and Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca’s legal counsel, Bob Jambois, told The Badger Herald what some of his answers would be. He said he disagreed with the DOJ’s request for the Supreme Court to take up the case but would rather the case get to the Supreme Court through other channels.
Jambois also said it was not alright for the DOJ to request the Supreme Court’s review on behalf of DOA Secretary Huebsch because he was not a defendant in the Dane County case.
The Republicans would like the legal process surrounding the collective bargaining bill to be finished quickly because they said the cuts in Gov. Scott Walker’s biennium budget would be offset by provisions within the budget repair bill, including the limits on collective bargaining.
Jambois said if the Supreme Court takes up the case it could take a long time, but Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald does not think the limits on collective bargaining would be placed in the budget bill.
“There are no plans at this point to do that,” said Welhouse, a Fitzgerald spokesperson. “We are still expecting the bill to go through the court system.”