Friday, March 18, 2011

Silly activist judge halts Wisconsin's collective bargaining law

Journal Sentinel: Madison -- Dane County Circuit Judge Maryann Sumi issued a temporary restraining order Friday, barring the publication of a controversial new law that would sharply curtail collective bargaining for public employees.

Sumi’s order will prevent Secretary of State Doug La Follette from publishing the law until she can rule on the merits of the case. Dane County Ismael Ozanne is seeking to block the law because he says a legislative committee violated the state’s open meetings law.

Sumi said Ozanne was likely to succeed on the merits.

"It seems to me the public policy behind effective enforcement of the open meeting law is so strong that it does outweigh the interest, at least at this time, which may exist in favor of sustaining the validity of the (law)," she said.

The judge’s finding – at least for now – is a setback to Republican Gov. Scott Walker and a victory for opponents, who have spent weeks in the Capitol to protest the bill. [MORE]
This judge is being a silly activist. Her temporary restraining order will have zero effect on the outcome of this law.

From attorney William Jacobson from Legal Insurrection explains the threshold of a temporary restraining order.
If this report accurately reflects the ruling, then the ruling is profoundly weak. The standard for a TRO requires a showing of likelihood of success on the merits, irreparable harm, and that a balancing of the equities supports granting the injunction. Some courts also consider whether granting the TRO will harm the public interest, but where the state is the party, this test really is subsumed in the balancing of the equities test.
OK, lets unpack this. Judge Sumi's issued a TRO because the plaintiff says the Senate Republicans did not provide sufficient time to call the committee meeting that started the passage of the bill. OK, if that is true, then where is the irreparable harm when Democrats do not have enough votes to stop Republicans from passing the law in the end? In other words, the outcome would be exactly the same whether sufficient time was given to call the committee meeting or not.

Even now the Republicans can simply do the whole thing over again and again the result will be the same ... the law passes. Judge Sumi is just being a partisan hack. This is why I have very little faith in ObamaCare being repealed via the Supreme Court. So long as judges can pull stuff out of thin air there is no reason to count on them to do the right thing.

Via: Memeorandum
Via: Journal Sentinel
Via: Legal Insurrection


Divine Theatre said...

If you look up "dufus" in the dictionary the definition is accompanied by her photograph.

Anonymous said...

What better way to build yourself a name when you are basically a nameless no body: Wait for a none-case and take a strong, obvious political side and make it into a case. Even if it amounts to nothing, you can put that into the resume, in bold, when that spot empties in the Supreme Court and there's a liberal in the White House.

2nd Anonymous.

FIREBIRD said...

A stupid ruling by an activist judge who APPARENTLY is clueless of the rules of the Wisconsin legislature - this is a TEMPORARY order, and she should be totally embarrassed to have her name on it - NO RULES WERE BROKEN

Justin said...

Do you happen to know if WI is one of the states where judges are elected? Is there any possibility of recall, or replace of this person? If so, it might be time for the WI republicans to start circulating a few petitions of their own.

Clifton B said...


Yep, she is a fright, LOL.

Clifton B said...

2nd Anony:

Oh she will definitely earn liberal street cred with this maneuver.

Clifton B said...


Even if you could stretch the truth and say rules were broken, the inescapable fact is that there aren't enough Democrats to stop the bill from passing. Thus her ruling is completely moot.

Clifton B said...


Unfortunately, in Wisconsin the judges are appointed. :-(

Mr. Mcgranor said...

Such a perversion of an aspect of common law.

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