United States District Court, D. New Mexico
REPUBLICAN PARTY OF NEW MEXICO, REPUBLICAN PARTY OF DONA ANA COUNTY, REPUBLICAN PARTY OF BERNALILLO COUNTY, NEW MEXICO TURN AROUND, HARVEY YATES, MARK VETETO, AND JALAPENO CORPORATION, Plaintiffs,
HECTOR H. BALDERAS, in his official capacity, New Mexico Attorney General, MAGGIE TOULOUSE OLIVER, in her official capacity, New Mexico Secretary of State, and District Attorneys RAUL TORREZ, DIANNA LUCE, and MARK D'ANTONIO, in their official capacities, Defendants.
ORDER DENYING MOTIONS FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT WITHOUT
PREJUDICE AND DENYING MOTION TO STRIKE
MATTER is before the Court on the parties' Motions for
Summary Judgment (Docs. 116 and 122), an
Order for Supplemental Briefing, filed on April 15, 2019
(Doc. 128), and Defendants' Motion to
Strike Plaintiffs' New Declarations, filed on May 20,
2019 (Doc. 135). For the reasons stated
below, the Court DENIES the motions for
summary judgment without prejudice and
DENIES the motion to strike.
parties completed briefing on their summary judgment motions
on February 20, 2019. On April 4, 2019, Governor Michelle
Lujan Grisham signed into law Senate Bill 3. Senate Bill 3
replaced NMSA § 1-19-34.7, which governed the campaign
contribution issues in this case. The new legislation has an
effective date of July 1, 2019.
discovering Senate Bill 3, the Court directed the parties to
supplement their briefing and explain whether the Court could
proceed to rule on the summary judgment briefing.
Doc. 128. The parties initially stated they
believed the Court could proceed on the summary judgment
briefing as-is, and that any ruling on the motions would
apply to Senate Bill 3. However, Plaintiffs filed new
declarations, which effectively add new material facts to the
summary judgment analysis. Defendants subsequently moved to
strike the declarations. Doc. 135. In lieu
of striking those declarations, Plaintiffs requested
additional briefing and discovery. Doc. 136, p.
the Court notes that Plaintiffs' desire to file new
declarations is proper, because they did not have the
opportunity to file them or assert those facts during the
summary judgment briefing. Senate Bill 3 was enacted after
the summary judgment briefing was completed. Because of the
changes to New Mexico's Campaign Reporting Act by Senate
Bill 3, the parties will need to assert new material facts
supported by new declarations. Defendants take the
inconsistent position that the Court should rule on the
summary judgment motions but should not consider facts
necessary for the Court do so. Ruling on the summary judgment
motions now without an appropriate summary judgment record
would likely result in error.
the Court concludes that new summary judgment briefing is
necessary to receive proper material facts and afford the
other party the opportunity to dispute them. Moreover, the
summary judgment briefing is now a morass of legal issues and
arguments which may no longer be relevant in light of Senate
Bill 3. The parties should file new summary judgment briefing
including only the issues and arguments they wish the Court
to consider. If the Court proceeds now, it risks ruling on
legal issues that are no longer properly before it.
parties should also consider whether pleadings will need to
be amended. See, e.g., Diffenderfer v. Cent. Baptist
Church of Miami, Fla., Inc., 404 U.S. 412, 415, 92 S.Ct.
574, 576, 30 L.Ed.2d 567 (1972) (where new legislation
enacted, United States Supreme Court remanded the case to the
district court with leave for appellants to amend their
pleadings); Ne. Fla. Chapter of Associated Gen.
Contractors of Am. v. City of Jacksonville, Fla., 508
U.S. 656, 672, 113 S.Ct. 2297, 2306, 124 L.Ed.2d 586 (1993)
additional discovery may or may not be appropriate.
Defendants argued that Plaintiffs' new declarations
prejudiced them because they were unable to conduct
depositions or discovery testing them, and therefore moved to
strike the declarations. Plaintiffs argued that additional
discovery should be allowed in lieu of striking the
declarations. The Court REFERS this matter
to United States Magistrate Judge Karen B. Molzen to
determine whether discovery should be reopened, and if so,
appropriate discovery parameters and deadlines.
argue that briefing the summary judgment motions again and
potentially reopening discovery will be prejudicial and will
be necessary every election cycle. However, new summary
judgment briefing is not necessary because of the new
election cycle, but because of the newly enacted Senate Bill
IS THEREFORE ORDERED that the Motions for Summary
Judgment (Docs. 116 and 122) are
DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE. The parties may
file new motions in accordance with this opinion. In those
motions, the parties should include all arguments they wish
the Court to consider and omit any arguments or claims that
are no longer relevant as a result of Senate Bill 3.
IS FURTHER ORDERED that Defendants' Motion to
Strike Declarations (Doc. 135) is
IS FINALLY ORDERED that potential future discovery
matters and the establishment of a new briefing schedule for
the summary judgment motions are REFERRED ...