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News Release

For Immediate Release
September 28, 2012


Attorney General's Response to Speaker O'Brien's Position on the Voter Registration Form Lawsuit

With respect to Speaker William O'Brien's press release today in which he stated that the Department of Justice failed to state the reason why the Legislature passed SB 318, the Voter Registration Law, Attorney General Delaney responds as follows:

The Attorney General's Office has filed a motion to reconsider with the trial court judge. In addition, my office has taken the extraordinary step of filing a Petition for Original Jurisdiction with the New Hampshire Supreme Court to oppose the court's issuance of an injunction. We have notified the Legislature of our intent to do so. The Petition needed to be
filed with the Supreme Court immediately for there to be an opportunity for appellate review prior to the General Election on November 6, 2012.

Attorney General Delaney stated: "Speaker O'Brien is currently asking my office to take a position that is not supported by the law. It is not in the best interests of the citizens of this State for the Attorney General to argue in court that the Legislature did something that it, in fact, did not do. We defend the laws as passed by the entire legislative body. My office is only able to defend the law that the Legislature actually passed, not the law that the Speaker wishes had been passed. The law that the Legislature passed did not, in any way, modify the definition of residency in New Hampshire. The Speaker's position is simply not supported by the law and will weaken our position in defending the law. We will not present it in court."

"We have opposed the Speaker's motion to intervene in this case. The Supreme Court has already made clear this session that the Attorney General represents the State in court. I will not allow politics to dictate the State's legal positions."

New Hampshire Department of Justice | 33 Capitol Street | Concord, NH | 03301
Telephone: 603-271-3658