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Montana Supreme Court Hands Down Second Rejection In Lawmakers’ Subpoena Case

Gavel on laptop.

The Montana Supreme Court has denied Republican lawmakers’ request to withdraw a previous order that limited the legislature’s subpoena power.

State Supreme Court justices wrote Tuesday they’re declining to rehear the lawmakers' case, saying they have not established grounds for reconsideration.

The conflict arose last spring when Republican leaders at the Legislature subpoenaed the seven Supreme Court Justices and court administrator for emails and a computer hard drive. That was part of an investigation into the judiciary over allegations of bias and misconduct, which justices have denied.

The justices blocked lawmakers’ subpoenas before issuing a final ruling that outlined restrictions on legislative powers on this issue. Lawmakers are now required to return all materials they got from the state Department of Administration before the subpoenas were blocked.

Lawmakers have called the justices’ ruling unconstitutional and a conflict of interest.

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