HELENA, Mont. — Wednesday, the Montana Supreme Court denied the Montana Legislature’s motion to disqualify all justices from a case challenging lawmakers’ subpoena power.
Justice Laurie McKinnon wrote the unanimous opinion.
She said the legislature attempted to create a conflict of interest for every member of the court.
She said to succumb to the legislature’s request would compromise public confidence in the courts.
This started last month, when the legislature issued subpoenas to all Supreme Court justices and the court administrator, after leaked emails allegedly showed the justices prejudging cases and expressing bias.
The administrator then challenged the legislature’s subpoena power in the Supreme Court.
State Sen. Greg Hertz (R-Polson), chair of the legislature’s investigative committee looking into the judiciary, said in a statement Wednesday, “The court is twisting itself in knots in this ruling.”
He added the Montana Supreme Court can’t keep its story straight and the legislature will continue its investigation.