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Judge puts off ruling in Wisconsin lame-duck lawsuit

NOW: Judge puts off ruling in Wisconsin lame-duck lawsuit

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MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Latest on liberal groups' challenge to Wisconsin Republicans' lame-duck laws (all times local):

4:30 p.m.

A Madison judge has stopped short of issuing a ruling in a lawsuit challenging Wisconsin Republicans' lame-duck laws limiting Democratic Gov. Tony Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul's powers.

Dane County Circuit Judge Richard Niess listened to oral arguments in the case for two hours Monday afternoon, then ended the hearing without issuing a ruling. He promised to put one out soon but didn't elaborate.

A coalition of A coalition of liberal-leaning groups filed a lawsuit in Dane County in January arguing the Legislature convened illegally when it passed the laws in December because the body's scheduled meeting days ended seven months earlier.

Misha Tseytlin, the Legislature's attorney, told Judge Richard Niess during a hearing Monday that he should dismiss the lawsuit. He argues that the Legislature's two-year sessions run continuously regardless of pre-scheduled floor periods.

Niess seemed to signal he agreed with the coalition near the end of the hearing, asking Tseytlin how he could word a stay that would delay the effect of his order if he ruled against the Legislature.

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3:05 p.m.

An attorney for the Legislature is trying to convince a judge to throw out a lawsuit challenging Wisconsin Republicans' lame-duck laws limiting Gov. Tony Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul's powers.

A coalition of liberal-leaning groups filed a lawsuit in Dane County in January arguing the Legislature convened illegally when it passed the laws in December because the body's scheduled meeting days ended seven months earlier.

Misha Tseytlin, the Legislature's attorney, told Judge Richard Niess during a hearing Monday that he should dismiss the lawsuit. He argues that the Legislature's two-year sessions run continuously regardless of pre-scheduled floor periods.

He warns that ruling that the lame-duck session was illegal would negate dozens of laws passed during floor periods that weren't scheduled at the beginning of each biennial session.

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8:40 a.m.

A Madison judge is set to consider blocking Wisconsin Republicans' lame-duck laws limiting Gov. Tony Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul's powers.

A coalition of liberal-leaning groups headlined by the League of Women Voters filed a lawsuit in Dane County in January arguing the Legislature convened illegally to pass the laws in December.

Judge Richard Niess is scheduled to hold a hearing Monday afternoon on the groups' motion seeking a temporary injunction blocking the laws. He'll also consider Republican lawmakers' motion to dismiss the case as well as a motion to dismiss the Wisconsin Elections Commission as a defendant.

Niess could decide the case outright Monday. Both the liberal-leaning groups and the GOP legislators are seeking summary judgment on the matter.

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