AG seeks to drop appeal in ‘political committee’ case

Luige del Puerto//July 3, 2015

AG seeks to drop appeal in ‘political committee’ case

Luige del Puerto//July 3, 2015

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The Attorney General last week asked the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to moot the state’s appeal in Galassini v. Fountain Hills, which invalidated Arizona’s old definition of political committee.

In his motion, Attorney General Mark Brnovich said the state’s appeal is no longer necessary after lawmakers adopted a new definition of “political committee” this year.

Brnovich also asked the court to vacate the trial’s original ruling, which found the old definition to be vague and overbroad and therefore unconstitutional.

The new law “moots this appeal,” Brnovich told the 9th Court.

“Neither the arguments on vagueness nor those on overbreadth apply to the laws as amended by HB2649. And Galassini’s allegations in the district court no longer present a case or controversy because they do not articulate a plan that risks violating HB2649,” he said.

Brnovich said lawmakers have also displayed no interest in reviving the original definition.

“The Legislature caused the mootness here by amending the relevant statutory provisions. The district court orders are now unreviewable, and, under Log Cabin Republicans and the cases cited above, this Court should vacate the lower court orders and remand for dismissal,” he added.

The AG’s move is not surprising. Last month, Attorney General’s Office informed federal district court Judge James Teilborg that it would drop the state’s appeal.

—   Jeremy Duda contributed to this report.