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Supreme Court denies AG's emergency request to stop Holcomb's lawsuit against state legislature

The Indiana Supreme Court won't intervene in Gov. Holcomb's lawsuit against the state legislature over a new law that limits the governor's emergency powers.
Credit: AP
FILE - In this Jan. 11, 2021 file photo, Indiana's attorney general Todd Rokita speaks, in Indianapolis. Indiana's attorney general took aim Friday, May 1, 2021, at Gov. Eric Holcomb's attempt to block a new law giving state legislators more authority to intervene during public emergencies declared by the governor. A lawsuit filed by the Republican governor on Tuesday, April 27, 2001, challenged the law enacted over his veto two weeks ago giving legislative leaders the power to call the General Assembly into what it calls an "emergency session." (AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File)

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Supreme Court has denied the attorney general's request to stall Gov. Eric Holcomb's lawsuit against the state legislature. 

At issue is a new law that state lawmakers passed earlier in the year. The law gives state lawmakers more power to intervene during public health emergencies. Holcomb argued the legislature was overstepping and sued. The lawsuit argues the legislature is "usurping a power given exclusively to the governor" under the state constitution.

RELATED: Gov. Holcomb sues Indiana's Legislature over emergency powers law

This is when Attorney General Todd Rokita entered the fight. He argued that he alone has the legal authority to represent the state in court and can decide whether the new law is allowed under the state constitution. 

A Marion County judge rejected Rokita's argument. 

The judge wrote that such an interpretation would give the attorney general greater power than Holcomb in protecting the governor’s constitutional powers. The judge said that would be “an absurd result.” 

RELATED: Judge letting Gov. Holcomb sue Indiana's legislature to block emergency law

So, Rokita filed an emergency request with the Indiana Supreme Court. He asked the higher court to "cease all proceedings" in Holcomb's lawsuit. That request was denied in a vote of 5-0 Tuesday.