Friday, March 11, 2011
Judge Smith Denied the Motion for a TRO today in the Dane County Lawsuit to Overturn Act 10.
The news reports are fragmentary, but it sounds like Judge Amy Smith denied the County's Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order today after a hearing. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that the Judge concluded that there would be no irreparable harm to anyone from the mere fact of the publication of the law by the Secretary of State. Presumably the judge concluded that if the law is truly subject to being invalidated for being passed in violation of the Wisconsin Constitution (see my earlier post here), the fact the law may go into effect for a brief period of time will not really lead to any adverse impacts that can't be fully reversed after the court rules on the law's validity based on a more complete presentation of facts and arguments. A TRO hearing is generally a fast and dirty proceeding, usually with no testimony and factual averments presented only by affidavits. The reports are that Judge Smith set the matter for further hearing next Wednesday. The Secretary of State has up to ten days from the Governor's signing to publish the act. So if he takes the full period, the court may well rule before publication. Any celebration over today's ruling by the GOP is likely premature. It seems like Judge Smith made a judicious decision.