Plunderbund’s case in the Supreme Court is moving forward and an oral argument has been granted by the Court. Because this case is a mandamus case, oral argument is not automatic as in most appeals that they accept. At this stage, the Court could have simply issued a decision.
The oral argument was granted at Public Safety’s request. Oral arguments are only granted in mandamus cases if the movant can show that the case is of great public interest. The issue of this case is whether Public Safety can magically turn standard incident reports into “security documents” in order to hide them. Since our position in the case is that Public Safety is hiding standard documents and fabricating this entire scenario, we did not want to argue that the case is of great public importance. I instead requested the documents be produced to the Court in camera so that they could determine if Public Safety was simply creating a smoke screen. But that is not to say that the oral argument is unfavorable in any way to our position as it provides an opportunity to address questions the court may have and they can also ask the assistant attorneys general representing Public Safety questions. They may still grant the in camera before or after the oral argument.
Justice Kennedy recused herself from the case, probably due to her earlier career in law enforcement. They will probably add a visiting judge to the case now.
Videos of Supreme Court oral arguments are available online and we will provide a link when it happens.
For more information on our lawsuit over public records related to threats against Governor Kasich, check out this post.