Deposition of Clerk Delayed
The Assoicated Press reports that a panel of judges yesterday delayed plans to depose the chief clerk of the Maryland House of Delegates in a Republican-led legal challenge to last month's special session of the General Assembly.
Republicans say all laws from the special session are invalid, alleging that the Senate violated the state constitution by taking too long of a break during the session without consent from the House. Democrats have called the allegation frivolous.
GOP lawyers say that Mary Monahan's testimony is essential to their case and that the chief clerk has been eluding their efforts to depose her. Irwin R. Kramer, an attorney for Republicans, had scheduled a deposition with her for today.
The attorney general's office then filed an emergency motion to stop the deposition, pending an appeal. A three-judge panel on the Court of Special Appeals delayed the deposition until further order from the court.
Republicans base their case on a provision in the state constitution that prevents one chamber of the General Assembly from adjourning for more than three days during a session without the permission of the other chamber. They say the Senate violated the rule, and thus $1.3 billion in taxes signed into law and legislation seeking a constitutional amendment to legalize slot machine gambling in Maryland are invalid.
The lawsuit is an effort to get the court to block higher taxes that take effect Tuesday.
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