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In the United States District Court for the Nozrthern District of Florida Gainesville Division National Organization for Marriage, Inc., Plaintiff v. Civil Action No. ____ Dawn Roberts, in her official capacity as Florida secretary of state; Jorge Cruz-Bustillo, in his official capacity as chair of the Florida Elections Commission, and William Hollimon, Alia Faraj-Johnson, Leon Jacobs, Jr., Julie Kane, Gregory King, Jose Luis Rodriguez, Thomas Rossin, and Brian Seymour, in their official capacities as members of the Florida Elections Commission, Defendants Plaintiff’s Motion to Consolidate Plaintiff National Organization for Marriage, Inc. (“NOM”) moves to consolidate the preliminary-injunction hearing with a trial on the merits. See FED. R. CIV. P. 65.a.2 (2009). This motion incorporates the brief. See L.R. 7.1.A (2005). Consolidations means advancing the trial on the merits to the preliminary- injunction hearing, see id., and is particularly valuable when a substantial part of the evidence at the preliminary-injunction stage will be relevant to the merits and admissible at trial. Consolidation is also valuable, because it avoids repeating evidence and expedites final disposition. See FED. R. CIV. P. 65.a.2 (notes on 1966 1 NOM MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE amendment); see also Pughsley v. 3750 Lake Shore Drive Cooperative Bldg., 463 F.2d 1055, 1057 (7th Cir. 1972) (Stevens, J.) (holding that when discovery is concluded or unnecessary, “consolidation may serve the interests of justice”); West Pub. Co. v. Mead Data Cent., Inc., 799 F.2d 1219, 1229 (8th Cir. 1986) (“This procedure is a good one, and we wish to encourage it”), cert. denied, 479 U.S. 1070 (1987); United States ex rel. Goldman v. Meredith, 596 F.2d 1353, 1358 (8th Cir. 1979) (approving consolidation when there was “no conflict of material fact” and the disputed question was one of law); Bright v. Nunn, 448 F.2d 245, 247 n.1 (6th Cir. 1971) (approving consolidation when decisive facts were uncontested). Plaintiff submits consolidation is appropriate, because Plaintiff has presented the necessary facts – which are within Plaintiff’s, not Defendants’, knowledge – and the remaining questions are question of law. And consolidation is consistent with the principle that a challenge such as this one must entail minimal if any discovery, to allow parties to resolve disputes quickly without burdensome litigation. And it must eschew the open-ended rough-and-tumble of factors, which invites complex argument in a trial court and a virtually inevitable appeal. In short, it must give the benefit of any doubt to protecting rather than stifling speech. FEC v. Wisconsin Right to Life, Inc., 551 U.S. 449, 469 (2007) (“WRTL II”) (brackets, quotation marks, and internal citations omitted). Moreover, “the burdens at the preliminary[-]injunction stage track the burdens at trial.” Gonzales v. O Centro Espirita Beneficente Uniao do Vegetal, 546 U.S. 418, 429 (2006). For example, at both stages, Defendants must show their law 2 NOM MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE survives constitutional scrutiny. See id. (citing Ashcroft v. ACLU, 542 U.S. 656, 666 (2004)). If Defendants cannot meet their burden now, they will not be able to meet it at trial either; they cannot need time to “discover” an interest supporting their law. Consolidation will therefore conserve judicial time and effort by avoiding duplicative hearings. For the foregoing reasons, Plaintiff asks that the Court grant its motion to consolidate. Respectfully submitted, /s/ Horatio G. Mihet Mathew D. Staver, James Bopp, Jr., Ind. No. 2838-84 Fla. No. 0701092 Randy Elf, New York No. 2863553 Horatio G. Mihet, JAMES MADISON CENTER FOR FREE SPEECH Fla. No. 026581 1 South Sixth Street LIBERTY COUNSEL Terre Haute, Ind. 47803 Post Office Box 540774 Telephone (812) 232-2434 Orlando, Fla. 32854 Facsimile (812) 235-3685 Telephone (800) 671-1776 bcb@BoppLaw.com Facsimile (407) 875-0770 Lead Counsel for Plaintiff email@example.com Local Counsel for Plaintiff September 22, 2010 3 NOM MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE
"Motion to Consolidate - IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT.pdf"