Bruce may fight judge’s order to answer questions about anti-tax initiatives
September 8, 2010
Anti-tax advocate Douglas Bruce will not be held in contempt of court, but he will have to answer questions about his involvement in placing three tax-cutting initiatives on the November ballot, a judge ruled Tuesday.
David Lane, Bruce’s attorney, said it’s likely Bruce will fight any attempt to make him testify about his involvement with or support of Amendments 60 and 61 and Proposition 101. Lane said inquiring about those activities would violate Bruce’s First Amendment rights.
“Douglas Bruce is not obligated to set forth any of his political beliefs,” Lane said after the hearing Tuesday before Denver District Judge Brian Whitney. “His life doesn’t become an open book.”
Bruce’s contempt-of-court hearing stemmed from a campaign-finance case involving the initiatives. Opponents claimed supporters never formed an issue committee with Secretary of State Bernie Buescher’s office, as required by law to report contributions and expenditures to place the issues on the ballot.
But Bruce did not show for a deposition in April. Ultimately, Buescher’s office, represented by Attorney General John Suthers, asked Whitney to compel Bruce’s testimony, which Whitney did in May.
The state tried to serve Bruce with the court order 30 times in May. Bruce later said he was out of town. That prompted Buescher’s office to seek a court order affirming that Bruce effectively had been served, which Whitney granted.
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Whitney then required Bruce to show why he shouldn’t be held in contempt. Among other things, Bruce argued he was never properly served with subpoenas.
Read more: Bruce may fight judge’s order to answer questions about anti-tax initiatives – The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/politics/ci_16016720#ixzz0yxXGAZYP