My God, Attorney General Rob McKenna sure is a poor loser:
Attorney General Rob McKenna is challenging the state Supreme Court's ruling that requires his office to represent the public lands commissioner in a legal appeal.
I didn't even know you could do that, but apparently it's possible to file a "motion for reconsideration" within so many days of a ruling, and that's exactly what McKenna did this week after getting his ass kicked in Goldmark v. McKenna. Still, it's a remedy the lawyer-folk tell me is rarely used and is even more rarely successful, especially in the face of a 7-2 margin. "I don't think there's a snowball's chance in hell," environmental attorney Peter Goldman bluntly predicted.
It's also a legal maneuver that's rich in irony. In the underlying case, McKenna denied Public Lands Commissioner Peter Goldmark the representation to appeal a lower court ruling, claiming that such an appeal would border on frivolous, yet here McKenna is wasting taxpayer dollars on a 39-page legal crapshoot. And speaking of crap, just look at the stinking load of shit our AG tries to push past AP reporter Mike Baker:
McKenna says he believes the ruling ... could have unintended consequences, such as forcing his office to represent both sides of a dispute.
Really, Rob? The AG representing both sides of a dispute doesn't happen often, but it happens often enough. In fact it's so common, and so easily dealt with, that you explicitly refute this assertion in your very own motion!
There are times when, in the Attorney General's legal judgment, judicial resolution of a legal dispute between agencies or officers would serve the legal interests of the state of Washington, such as when a judicial decision is necessary for the state to proceed with confidence in a particular undertaking. Where that is the case, the Attorney General has exercised his or her authority to appoint a special assistant attorney general to represent the disputing parties, or with proper screening to represent those parties through assistant attorneys general.
Either McKenna didn't read his own motion, or he was counting on the AP's Baker not to. It's all part of a pattern in which McKenna intentionally misleads reporters about legal issues, relying on the well-founded expectation that they lack the legal expertise or the confidence to fisk him.
Well I'm not that shy. Critics are free to dismiss me as a non-lawyer, and I certainly don't get all of the jargon and procedure, but as I've proven from early in my blogging career, I've got an uncanny knack for untangling the law.
I haven't had time to more than skim McKenna's motion yet, but given my knowledge of the underlying case, I'm inclined to agree with Goldman: McKenna doesn't stand a snowball's chance in hell. Which suggests a more interesting story my fellow journalists might want to look into: Why the fuck is McKenna putting so much time, effort and taxpayer money into such a losing cause? Inquiring minds want to know.