Thursday, October 27, 2022

BREAKING: AZGOP Ordered To Comply With Subpoena In Battle Over 2021 Alleged Voter Suppression Laws

The AZGOP has been ordered to comply with a subpoena for records in a long-running court battle over two 2021 laws that are allegedly voter suppression measures. The subpoena is from the Democratic-philic groups that filed the suit. Judge Dominic Lanza acknowledged sticky situation, says plaintiffs' requests are limited.

(This is a developing story. Please check back later for further details.)

This article was reported by AZ Law founder Paul Weich. Paul was running for a seat in Arizona's House of Representatives.

"AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates about opinions from the Arizona Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, as well as trial and appellate courts, etc. AZ Law is founded by Phoenix attorney Paul Weich, and joins Arizona's Politics on the internet. 

AZ Law airs on non-profit Sun Sounds of Arizona, a statewide reading service that provides audio access to printed material for people who cannot hold or read print material due to a disability. If you know someone who could benefit from this 24/7 service, please let them know about member-supported Sun Sounds. And, YOU can donate or listen here. 

Previous episodes of AZ Law can be streamed or downloaded here, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

BREAKING: Justice Kagan orders temporary halt of turnover of @kelliwardaz's phone records to Jan. 6 Committee (READ)

UPDATE, 11/14, 10:40am: The U.S. Supreme Court has TURNED DOWN Kelli Ward's request to stop T-Mobile from turning over her call records to the January 6 Select Committee. Only Justices Clarence Thomas and Sam Alito would have granted a longer-lasting stay of the subpoena pending the appeal in front of the 9th Circuit.

Justice Kagan ordered a temporary halt of the turnover of AZGOP Chair Kelli Ward's - and, her husband's -  phone records to Jan. 6 Committee. She has ordered the January 6 Committee that issued the subpoena to respond by Friday afternoon.

Ward filed her request to the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday, following the 9th Circuit's rejection of her request for a stay of the subpoena pending her appeal of the dismissal of her case.

Ward is arguing that the subpoena must be halted because it will chill the political associational rights for Congress to be able to identify the people (behind the phone numbers) who she spoke with as Chair of the AZGOP. (She is not continuing to argue that the subpoena violates HIPAA rights.)

Arizona's Law has provided extensive coverage of this case since it was first filed in February.



This article was reported by AZ Law founder Paul Weich. Paul was running for a seat in Arizona's House of Representatives.

"AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates about opinions from the Arizona Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, as well as trial and appellate courts, etc. AZ Law is founded by Phoenix attorney Paul Weich, and joins Arizona's Politics on the internet. 

AZ Law airs on non-profit Sun Sounds of Arizona, a statewide reading service that provides audio access to printed material for people who cannot hold or read print material due to a disability. If you know someone who could benefit from this 24/7 service, please let them know about member-supported Sun Sounds. And, YOU can donate or listen here. 

Previous episodes of AZ Law can be streamed or downloaded here, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Friday, October 21, 2022

BREAKING: Judge Ready To Take a "Fresh... Harder Look" At Arizona's Genetic Anomalies Abortion Ban In Light of Dobbs

Arizona Judge Douglas Rayes is ready to hear oral arguments Tuesday on Arizona's 2021 ban on abortions due to genetic abnormalities, in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's overturning the Roe v. Wade precedent. Rayes today issued a 10 page memorandum listing what questions he would like attorneys for the abortion providers/supporters and the state to address in the U.S. District Court injunction hearing.

"The Court must consider these issues fresh and carefully ensure its analysis comports with Dobbs," Rayes wrote. At the same time that the Supreme Court majority handed down that landmark opinion, it vacated Rayes' previous injunction. That 6-3 majority noted that Roe and subsequent cases had "diluted the strict standard for facial constitutional challenges...ignored the Court's third-party standing doctrine... disregarded standard res judicata principles... flouted the ordinary rules on the severability of unconstitutional provisions.. and they have distorted First Amendment doctrines." (empahsis added)

Therefore, Rayes tells the parties he "must take a harder look" at several issues. He then asks 13 questions for the plaintiffs' attorneys and 7 for the defendants'. He is looking at the arguments that the provisions in the 2021 ban are unconstitutionally vague when considered collectively, and how each provision might stand on its own. He is asking the state to explain the phrase defining "genetic abnormality" as "the presence or presumed presence of an abnormal gene expression", and whether any other Arizona laws require a defendant - in this hypothetical case, a medical provider - to know the "subjective motives of another person".

This case is one of several that are active against one or another of Arizona's jigsaw puzzle of abortion bans. The Arizona Court of Appeals is considering the Territorial era complete abortion ban, and oral argument is set for November 3 in Superior Court on a case filed by the Arizona Medical Association seeking to establish that that compete ban does not apply to licensed physicians (who would be subject to the many restrictions and the 2022 15-week ban. 

There have been calls for the Legislature to go into special session to pass a law that would clarify the jumble of overlapping and conflicting laws.

This article was reported by AZ Law founder Paul Weich. Paul was running for a seat in Arizona's House of Representatives.

"AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates about opinions from the Arizona Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, as well as trial and appellate courts, etc. AZ Law is founded by Phoenix attorney Paul Weich, and joins Arizona's Politics on the internet. 

AZ Law airs on non-profit Sun Sounds of Arizona, a statewide reading service that provides audio access to printed material for people who cannot hold or read print material due to a disability. If you know someone who could benefit from this 24/7 service, please let them know about member-supported Sun Sounds. And, YOU can donate or listen here. 

Previous episodes of AZ Law can be streamed or downloaded here, or wherever you get your podcasts.


Tuesday, October 18, 2022

AZ Solicitor General Beau Roysden Leaves AG's Office (ARIZONA'S LEGAL SHORTS)

 Arizona Solicitor General Beau Roysden has left the Attorney General's Office after more than two years in the high-profile post.

Roysden represented the State in several high-profile cases brought by outgoing Attorney General Mark Brnovich, including arguing in front of the U.S. Supreme Court. Roysden joined the AG's Office from private practice in 2018. Before becoming the Solicitor General, he was the Division Chief for the Appeals & Constitutional Litigation Division.

No word yet on where the University of Arizona law school graduate (2008) is headed next. The departure was not announce by Brnovich's office, but Arizona's Law discovered he had left on October 7 from a new filing in the Isaacson abortion case.

Arizona's Law has asked the Attorney General's Office about this and other high profile departures as Brnovich prepares to turn the office over to either Democrat Kris Mayes or Republican Abe Hamadeh. We will update as warranted.

This article was reported by AZ Law founder Paul Weich. Paul was running for a seat in Arizona's House of Representatives.

"AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates about opinions from the Arizona Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, as well as trial and appellate courts, etc. AZ Law is founded by Phoenix attorney Paul Weich, and joins Arizona's Politics on the internet. 

AZ Law airs on non-profit Sun Sounds of Arizona, a statewide reading service that provides audio access to printed material for people who cannot hold or read print material due to a disability. If you know someone who could benefit from this 24/7 service, please let them know about member-supported Sun Sounds. And, YOU can donate or listen here. 

Previous episodes of AZ Law can be streamed or downloaded here, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Thursday, October 13, 2022

BREAKING: National Media Ask Court To Release Jan. 6 Videos Of Arizona's Jacob Chansley (READ Application)

Update, 11/7, 1pm: Judge Lamberth today ordered the government to turn over the Chansley videos to a national coalition  of media organizations within 72 hours. No opposition to the media request was made by the DOJ or Chansley's attorneys. 


UPDATE, 10/21, 4:15pm: Judge Lamberth has given the Department of Justice and Chansley's attorneys until next Friday to file any opposition to the media coalition's request to release the videos.

A coalition of national media organizations has asked the court to release 12 January 6th-related videos of Arizona's Jacob Chansley during the insurrection, which were submitted by the DOJ in the sentencing phase of the case.

The request comes the same day that the House January 6 Select Committee held a hearing. The coalition includes all three major broadcast networks, CNN, the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, the Washington Post, National Public Radio and others. They cite the presumption that the videos are subject to "an unrebutted presumption of public access" and asks the Court to order their release within 72 hours.

Chansley - who was referred to as the QAnon Shaman - was a very visible participant in the storming of the Capitol. He is currently serving a 41 month sentence in prison. It is not clear whether the videos in question were shot on January 6, 2021, or whether they are of Chansley at other times.

This article was reported by AZ Law founder Paul Weich. Paul was running for a seat in Arizona's House of Representatives.

"AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates about opinions from the Arizona Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, as well as trial and appellate courts, etc. AZ Law is founded by Phoenix attorney Paul Weich, and joins Arizona's Politics on the internet. 

AZ Law airs on non-profit Sun Sounds of Arizona, a statewide reading service that provides audio access to printed material for people who cannot hold or read print material due to a disability. If you know someone who could benefit from this 24/7 service, please let them know about member-supported Sun Sounds. And, YOU can donate or listen here. 

Previous episodes of AZ Law can be streamed or downloaded here, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

UNUSUAL DISPUTE: AZ State Senate Says It Paid Talonya Adams Her $300,000 Retaliation Verdict; Adams Tells Court That's False

Attorneys for the Arizona State Senate yesterday told the court that they have paid former staffer Talonya Adams the $300,000+ in damages after a jury had awarded her more than $2.75M for employment retaliation. (Federal law capped the award at $300,000.)
(From Twitter profile)


However, Adams today told the court that she did not receive the $300,000 check that was apparently sent by regular first class mail.

The unusual legal exchange is the latest chapter in a long-running case that has had political implications. Adams reported to the Senate's Democratic Caucus, and she maintains that the retaliation shows that then-Minority Leader Katie Hobbs racially discriminated against her. The alleged discrimination was not the basis for the verdict.

Adams does acknowledge receiving a second, smaller check (less than $6,000) mailed September 30, but the issue is the $300,000 check purportedly mailed on September 21. (Interestingly, the smaller check was mailed by certified mail but the large one was not.)

The State Senate switched law firms on the case last month, from Clark Hill (formerly Ryley Carlock) to Littler Mendelson. The latter filed a Satisfaction of Judgment yesterday; Arizona law gives that responsibility to the party that receives the money, but federal law is less clear.

Arizona's Law has reached out to both parties for responses, and will update as warranted.


(The exhibits were removed pending redaction of personal info.)

This article was reported by AZ Law founder Paul Weich. Paul was running for a seat in Arizona's House of Representatives.

"AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates about opinions from the Arizona Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, as well as trial and appellate courts, etc. AZ Law is founded by Phoenix attorney Paul Weich, and joins Arizona's Politics on the internet. 

AZ Law airs on non-profit Sun Sounds of Arizona, a statewide reading service that provides audio access to printed material for people who cannot hold or read print material due to a disability. If you know someone who could benefit from this 24/7 service, please let them know about member-supported Sun Sounds. And, YOU can donate or listen here. 

Previous episodes of AZ Law can be streamed or downloaded here, or wherever you get your podcasts.

Thursday, October 6, 2022

BREAKING: Iowa Election Denier Arrested/Indicted For Twice Threatening To "Lynch" Maricopa County Election Official, Arizona AG official (ARIZONA'S LEGAL SHORTS)

(UPDATE: Maricopa County Supervisor Clint Hickman has been identified as the victim of the threats. Here is the full statement from Hickman this afternoon:

"I remember exactly where I was when I heard that voicemail.  It was chilling.  This wasn't a prank call.  This wasn't protected speech.  This was a serious threat to me and my family.  I'm grateful to the Department of Justice and the FBI for taking this case seriously and making an arrest, and I'm pleased the U.S. Attorney General has set up a task force to address increased threats of violence to election workers and elected officials.  

I can tell you, though, that is not enough.  I've received numerous threats over the past two years.  My colleagues on the Board have as well.  The Recorder.  And worst of all, county elections staff doing their job honorably are getting calls and emails threatening violence, calling them traitors.  It's despicable.  

And by and large, people in positions of power, in positions of leadership, in positions of influence here in Arizona are silent.  How can you be silent?

So I'm speaking out today in hopes that others will follow.  Whether it's a person who shares your politics or your worldview or not, no one should be subjected to this kind of hatred.  And if we truly want to keep our country great, we will do everything we can to denounce threats against election workers and combat the disinformation that imperils our democracy.")

ORIGINAL ARTICLE:  A 64-year old Iowa man was arrested and indicted today for twice threatening a Maricopa County election official last year. The initial threat to "lynch" the person came after the Arizona State Senate held a hearing on the so-called audit it conducted on Maricopa County's 2020 election. Jack Sellers, the Chair of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, had blasted the hearing.

Mark Rissi left the voicemail on September 27. He then called the Arizona Attorney General's Office on December 8 and again threatened to hang the election official along with the person at the AG's Office.

Rissi ranted: "I'm a victim of a crime.... The election that was fraudulent across the state of Arizona, that [VICTIM] knows was fraudulent, that [VICTIM] has images of the conspirators deleting election fraud data from the MCBOS computer system. Do your job, [VICTIM2], or you will hang with those [expletive] in the end. We will see to it. Torches and pitchforks. That's your future, [expletive]. Do your job."

Rissi is facing a maximum penalty of up to 12 years on the three counts.

The FBI offices in both Phoenix and Cedar Rapids are investigating the case, and is part of the Justice Department's Election Threats Task Force launched in June 2021.


This article was reported by AZ Law founder Paul Weich. Paul was running for a seat in Arizona's House of Representatives.

"AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates about opinions from the Arizona Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, as well as trial and appellate courts, etc. AZ Law is founded by Phoenix attorney Paul Weich, and joins Arizona's Politics on the internet. 

AZ Law airs on non-profit Sun Sounds of Arizona, a statewide reading service that provides audio access to printed material for people who cannot hold or read print material due to a disability. If you know someone who could benefit from this 24/7 service, please let them know about member-supported Sun Sounds. And, YOU can donate or listen here. 

Previous episodes of AZ Law can be streamed or downloaded here, or wherever you get your podcasts.


Tuesday, October 4, 2022

BREAKING: Planned Parenthood Files Emergency Motion To Stop 1864 Abortion Ban and "ongoing harm caused by the legal limbo of abortion in Arizona" (READ Motion) (ARIZONA'S LEGAL SHORTS)

2pm: BREAKING: Planned Parenthood Files Emergency Motion To Stop "ongoing harm caused by the legal limbo of abortion in Arizona" 

Planned Parenthood filed an emergency motion this afternoon to stop the "ongoing harm caused by the legal limbo of abortion in Arizona". On September 23, Pima County Superior Court Judge Kellie Johnson reinstated the abortion ban that had been on Arizona's books since 1864. Last week, she refused to put a hold on it pending appeal. So, today's emergency motion for a pause asks the Arizona Court of Appeals (Division 2) to pause the ban while it considers the conflicting jumble of Arizona anti-abortion laws in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade.

Today's Motion argues that Johnson's decision to lift the injunction on the Civil War-era law causes irreparable confusion "because that interpretation would impliedly repeal the dozens of abortion laws passed since 1973." The Legislature's 2021 law banning procedures due to a genetic anomaly is currently in front of another court and the 2022 law imposing a ban after 15 weeks went into effect on September 25.

No word yet on how quickly the Court of Appeals will consider the matter.

Here is the Emergency Motion:

12:50pm: BREAKING: AZGOP Chair Kelli Ward "asserted her rights under the Fifth Amendment" in a January 6 Select Committee deposition, according to an attorney for the Committee in today's Phoenix oral argument. 

The hearing before Judge Diane Humetewa was to argue whether Ward's cell phone provider should turn over her phone call logs pending Ward's appeal to the Ninth Circuit. Humetewa took the matter under advisement after a 35-minute hearing.

Politico reported on the Committee's attorney's disclosure here. Ward and the AZGOP organized the "alternate" slate of electors that they tried to use to halt the Jan. 6 certification of the Electoral College votes.

Arizona's Law has provided continuing coverage of Ward's lawsuit to stop the Committee's subpoena of her cell phone records. Humetewa dismissed the case last month.


12:20pm: NEW: Finchem & Gosar APPEAL Their $75,000 Sanction For Filing Frivolous Jan. 6 Defamation Case

U.S. Rep. Paul Gosar and Secretary of State candidate Mark Finchem are appealing a judge's ruling blasting them for filing a frivolous defamation case, and sanctioning them $75,000 (jointly). 

The notice of appeal was filed last week and will go to Division 2 of the Arizona Court of Appeals. Finchem, Gosar and Anthony Kern had filed the case against then-State Rep. Charlene Fernandez, complaining that the letter from Arizona legislative Democrats - including her and 42 other lawmakers - defamed them by suggesting they be investigated for their roles in the January 6 (2021) insurrection.

Yuma County Superior Court Judge Levi Gunderson was not impressed, dismissing the case in April and blasting the plaintiffs and their attorneys in August. 

The sanctions award is only against the plaintiffs, not also against their attorneys. Judge Gunderson could have made them all responsible for Fernandez's $75,516 in attorneys fees and court costs. Instead, he simply berated the attorneys, literally underlining the importance of the distinction between "zealously" representing your clients and competently and diligently representing them.

There is no set timeline for the appeal. Finchem is the GOP nominee for Secretary of State, running against Democrat Adrian Fontes. Gosar is running for re-election in a re-drawn district, against Democrat David Lucier.

This article was reported by AZ Law founder Paul Weich. Paul was running for a seat in Arizona's House of Representatives.

"AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates about opinions from the Arizona Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, as well as trial and appellate courts, etc. AZ Law is founded by Phoenix attorney Paul Weich, and joins Arizona's Politics on the internet. 

AZ Law airs on non-profit Sun Sounds of Arizona, a statewide reading service that provides audio access to printed material for people who cannot hold or read print material due to a disability. If you know someone who could benefit from this 24/7 service, please let them know about member-supported Sun Sounds. And, YOU can donate or listen here. 

Previous episodes of AZ Law can be streamed or downloaded here, or wherever you get your podcasts.


Secretary of State and Union Group File Separate Suits To Force Cochise County To Certify Election

 ( This is a developing story. Please check back later for updates .) "AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates abo...