Defendant s Answer 1 by eMEU65

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									                              UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

                                 DISTRICT OF MINNESOTA

                                     THIRD DIVISION


Scott Booth, Thomas D. Loyd, Frank                 Court File No. OOCV-1672 (MJD/JGL)
Solchaga, David Witte, Scott Wyman, Charles
Perrin, Warren N. Higgins Jr-, Knute Gladen,
Michael Seeber, Terry Nyblom. and Stephen               DEFENDANTS' ANSWER
Blake, forming the R-KDS Legal Action                  TO AMENDED COMPLAINT
Committee, Richard Doyle of the Men's
Defense Association, William J. Hageman,
Charles W. Hurd, Kyle Knutson, Jim
Lovestar, Yves Nadeau, and Pradeep
Ramathan of the National Coalition of Free
Men, Twin Cities Chapter, in behalf of
themselves individually and all others
similarly situated,

                Plaintiffs,

     vs,

Sheryl Ramstad Hvass, Commissioner of
Corrections; Michael O'Keefe, Commissioner
of Human Services; Charles R. Weaver Jr.,
Commissioner of Public Safety; and Christine
Jax, Commissioner of Children, Families, and
Learning for the State of Minnesota,

               Defendants.

       Defendants Sheryl Ramstad Hvass, Commissioner of Corrections; Michael O'Keefe,

Commissioner of Human Services; Charles R. Weaver Jr., Commissioner of Public Safety; and

Christine Jax, Commissioner of Children. Families, and Learning (collectively, "Defendants"),

for their answer to the Amended Complaint dated October 17, 2000, herein, admit, deny and

allege as follows:




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       1.      As to paragraph 1 of the Amended Complaint, deny that this Court has

jurisdiction; admit that the remainder of the paragraph purports to describe this action.

       2.      As to paragraph 2 of the Complaint, allege that they are without knowledge or

information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations therein.

       3.      As to paragraph 3 of the Amended Complaint, admit that the paragraph purports

to describe on whose behalf this lawsuit is brought.

       4.      As to paragraph 4 of the Amended Complaint, admit that the paragraph purports

to describe the relief that Plaintiffs seek in this action; deny that the statute which Plaintiffs seek

to be declared unconstitutional, Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31 through 611A.375, is entitled the

"Minnesota Battered Women's Act": refer the Court to the official text of the statute, including

the amendments made at 2000 Minn. Laws, ch. 445, art. 2, sec. 10-21.

       5.      As to paragraph 5 of the Amended Complaint, deny that Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31

through 611A.375 is commonly designated as the "Minnesota flattered Women's Act"; refer the

Court to the official text of the statute. the legislative history thereto, and the amendments made

at 2000 Minn. Laws, ch. 445, art. 2, sec. 10-21.

       6. As to paragraph 6 of the Amended Complaint, admit that Defendant Sheryl Ramstad

Hvass is the Commissioner of Corrections for the State of Minnesota; refer the Court to the

official text of the statutes and Department of Administration Reorganization Order cited.

       7.      As to paragraph 7 of the Amended Complaint, admit that Defendant Michael

O'Keefe is the Commissioner of Human Services for the State of Minnesota; refer the Court to

the official text of the statutes and session laws cited; allege that pursuant to 1999 Minn. Laws,

ch. 216, art. 6, sec. 19, the Department of Human Services no longer provides federal funds to

battered women's shelters; allege that under the 1999 session law just cited, and under 2000

Minn. Laws, ch. 445, art. 2, Sec. 22-26, such federal funds are instead given to the Center to


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provide per diem payments to battered women's shelters; admit that Defendant Charles R.

Weaver, Jr. is the Commissioner of Public Safety for the State of Minnesota.

       8.      As to paragraph 8 of the Amended Complaint, admit that Defendant Christine Jax

is the Commissioner of Children, Families and Learning ("CFL"); refer the Court to the official

text of the statutes cited and other laws referenced; allege that the state funds that CFL receives

for violence prevention education are used for programs such as education of students on

nonviolent methodologies for conflict resolution, peer education/mediation, student assistance

through support groups, counseling, parent education and positive discipline programs; allege

that such violence prevention education programs do not specifically target domestic abuse

problems; deny that such violence prevention education is substantially influenced by programs

under Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375; deny the remaining allegations in the paragraph.

       9.      As to paragraph 9 of the Amended Complaint, refer the Court to the official text

of Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375; allege that the Center provides grants of federal and state

funds to programs that the Center has determined meet statutory and other necessary criteria;

allege that the Center does not distribute private funds; allege that a significant portion of the

funding that the Center provides is used to support battered women's shelters; allege that a

portion of such funding is used to provide services to battered men; refer the Court to the official

text of Minn. Stat. § 609.101, subd. 2; allege that a small portion of fines imposed in criminal

prosecutions under the statute just cited are directed to the Center for combating prostitution;

allege that a portion of such fines go directly to battered women's shelters.

       10.     As to paragraph 10 of the Amended Complaint, allege that the battered women's

shelters that receive funding from the Center under Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375 provide

emergency shelter services to battered women and their children as provided under the statute;

allege that under the Domestic Abuse Act, Minn. Stat. ch. 518B, subd. 4, a petitioner as defined



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in the statute may petition the court for an order for protection and obtain the relief authorized

under the statute; allege that an "advocate" is a person who assists the victim of domestic abuse

in seeking relief under the Domestic Abuse Act;. deny that advocates render legal services;

allege that some advocates are employees of the battered women's shelters; allege that payment,

if any, for the assistance of the advocate comes from several sources, including. from the Center;

refer the Court to Minn. Stat. § 518B.01, subd. 6 for the relief that a court may provide in an

order for protection; refer the Court to Minn. Stat. § 513B.O1, subd. 7 for the authority to obtain

an ex parte order for protection; refer the Court to the cases cited in the paragraph; deny the

remaining allegations as legal argument not susceptible to a responsive pleading.

       11.     As to paragraph 11 of the Amended Complaint, deny that the battered women's

shelters that receive funding from the Center under Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375 publish

literature as characterized in the paragraph; allege upon information and belief that Exhibit 1 to

the Amended Complaint was published over ten years ago; allege that they are without

knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to who published said Exhibit, where it

has been distributed, or whether funds from the Center were used to publish said Exhibit; admit

that Exhibit 1 is circulated by the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project which is funded under

Minn. Stat. § 611A.31-611A.375; refer the Court to the publication cited regarding the

allegations concerning the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project and the publication itself.

       12.     As to paragraph 12 of the Amended Complaint, deny that the battered women's

shelters that receive funding from the Center under Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375 bring

political pressure to bear on Minnesota public officers to publish literature as characterized in the

paragraph; allege that they are without knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to

who published Exhibit 2 to the Amended Complaint, where it has been distributed, or whether

funds from the Center were used to publish said Exhibit.



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       13.     As to paragraph 13 of the Amended Complaint, deny the allegations therein.

       14.     As to paragraph 14 of the Amended Complaint. deny the allegation therein.

       15.     As to paragraph 15 of the Amended Complaint, refer the Court to the official text

of the bill cited and the legislative history to Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375.

       16.     As to paragraph 16 of the Amended Complaint, refer the Court to of the bill cited

and the legislative history to Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375.

       17.     As to paragraph 17 of the Amended Complaint, refer the Court to of the bill cited

and the legislative history to Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375.

       18.     As to paragraph 18 of the Amended Complaint, refer the Court to the official text

of the bill cited, the legislative history to Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375, and the transcript of

the proceedings referenced.

       19.     As to paragraph 19 of the Amended Complaint, refer the Court to the official text

of Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.31-611A.375 and the legislative history thereto.

       20.     As to paragraph 20 of the Amended Complaint, allege that they are without

knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations therein.

       21.     As to paragraph 21 of the Amended Complaint, deny the allegations therein.

       22.     As to paragraph 22 of the Amended Complaint, deny the allegations therein.

       23.     As to paragraph 23 of the Amended Complaint, deny the allegations therein.

       24.     Except as expressly admitted, alleged, qualified, or otherwise responded to above,

deny each and every allegation in the Amended Complaint.

                                  AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSES

       1.      Plaintiffs lack standing to raise the claims set forth in the Amended Complaint.

       2.      The Amended Complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.

       3.      Defendants cannot be held liable for damages because they are being sued in only



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their official capacities and because the Amended Complaint does not seek damages.

       WHEREFORE, Defendants pray:

       1.      That Plaintiffs take nothing by their Amended Complaint and that the Court

dismiss the Amended Complaint with prejudice;

       2.      That the Court award Defendants their attorney's fees, costs and disbursements in

defending this action; and




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         3.        That the Court grant Defendants such other relief as the Court deems just and

equitable.



Dated:                                                MIKE HATCH
                                                      Attorney General
                                                      State of Minnesota




                                                      JENNIFER K. PARK
                                                      Assistant Attorney General
                                                      Atty. Reg No. 17757X

                                                      445 Minnesota St., #1100
                                                      St. Paul, MM 55101-2128
                                                      (651) 282-5717

                                                      ATTORNEYS FOR DEFENDANTS


AG: 407636,v. 01




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