Breck et al v. Stapleton
ORDER granting 31 Motion for Permanent Injunction. Signed by Judge Brian Morris on 7/24/2017. (NOS)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MONTANA
in his official capacity as
Secretary of State of the
State of Montana,
Upon consideration of the parties’ joint motion for entry of a
permanent injunction (ECF No. 31), and for the reasons set forth in this
Court’s April 8, 2017 Order granting the plaintiffs’ motion for a temporary
restraining order and preliminary injunction (ECF No. 19), the Court hereby
GRANTS a permanent injunction. The Court permanently ENJOINS the
Defendant Montana Secretary of State, along with his or her officers, agents,
servants, employees, attorneys, successors, and all other persons who are in
active concert or participation with them, from enforcing Montana’s
numerical signature requirement for independent candidates, Mont. Code
Ann. § 13-10-502(2) (2015), in any future special election called under Mont
Code Ann. § 13-25-203 (2015) to fill a vacancy in the office of United States
Representative or United States Senator. It is further ORDERED that
unless and until the Montana Legislature amends the applicable ballot access
laws, the number of valid signatures required for ballot access in any such
election under Mont. Code Ann. § 13-10-502(2) shall not exceed 80 times
the total number of days between the date on which the election is called and
the deadline for submitting nominating petitions to county election officials
under Mont Code Ann. § 13-10-503 (2015).
In light of this injunction, the Court FINDS that the plaintiffs are the
prevailing party within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. § 1988 and that they are
entitled to reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs in the amount of Fifty-Six
Thousand and no/100 Dollars ($56,000.00).
DATED this 24th day of July, 2017.
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