A federal judge has officially quashed a subpoena filed by the Department Of Justice (DOJ) against Eagle Forum of Alabama (EFA).
In September, the DOJ demanded all information related to the non-profit's legislative activities promoting the Alabama Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act (VCAP), which banned transgender hormones and surgeries for people under 19.
Immediately after VCAP was signed by Gov. Kay Ivey, then-White House press secretary Jen Psaki threatened Alabama officials by saying they were being "put on notice" by the Department of Justice and the Department of Health and Human Services, vowing President Joe Biden would hold them accountable.
According to EFA executive director Becky Gerritson, the subpoena initially requested 11 broad categories of information pertaining to VCAP. The DOJ came back later and lowered the list to only five items. On Friday, Oct 7, EFA's attorney received an email stating the DOJ was withdrawing the subpoena. Then, fewer than two hours later, EFA's attorney received a voicemail from a DOJ attorney saying the email was sent by mistake and they did want one item not listed on the original subpoena.
On Monday, U.S District Judge Liles Burke officially quashed the DOJ’s subpoena, saying the burden of the requested material “outweighs any slight relevance it may have.”
According to Burke, the requested information was unnecessary to determine the heart of the DOJ’s case, that being, if the VCAP is constitutional under the 14th Amendment.
“The Government has provided neither evidence nor argument to refute these conclusions. To the contrary, the Government’s eleventh-hour ‘narrowing’ of the requested material suggests that the subpoenas, as written, are overly broad and unduly burdensome given the limited resources of the nonparties,” Burke’s opinion read. “Considering the relevance (or lack thereof) of the requested material, the burden of production, the nonparties’ resources, and the Government’s own conduct, the Court finds that the subpoenas exceed the scope of discovery.”
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