The Washington State Supreme Court announced today that it has granted review to Goldmark v. McKenna, Commissioner for Public Lands Peter Goldmark’s petition for a writ of mandamus seeking to compel Attorney General Rob McKenna fulfill his statutory duty to provide legal counsel.
“I am pleased that the Supreme Court has decided to take up my case with the Attorney General,” Goldmark said in an official statement. “It is a critical constitutional question of whether or not the Attorney General has the discretion to make policy for issues under the purview of another statewide elected official.”
This marks the second time in as many weeks that the Court has rejected McKenna’s claim of broad discretionary powers. Oral arguments are scheduled to be held November 18, the same day as those for Seattle v. McKenna, Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes’ petition seeking to compel McKenna to withdraw from the lawsuit challenging health care reform.
In granting review of the two related cases, and scheduling to hear them on the same day, the Washington State Supreme Court apparently believes the constitutional issues raised by the Attorney General’s unprecedented claim of extra-statutory powers are a pretty big deal… but so far our local media disagrees. Huh.