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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Ind. Gov't. - Governor's office objects to ILB post; the ILB's response [Updated]

The ILB has just received this message from the Governor's office:

Hello Marcia,

Please find attached the second memo sent from the Governor’s General Counsel in regard to agency compliance instructions. This memo was sent to members of the media who asked for it, as was the first memo.

The Indianapolis Star, in their story found here: http://www.indystar.com/story/news/2014/08/19/latest-ruling-overturning-sex-marriage-ban-makes-indiana-governor-party-suit/14318877/, link to this memo within their article.

We respectfully ask that you correct the information referenced at the end of your blog post titled “Ind. Decisions – How does today’s ruling by Judge Young impact his dismissal of Love v. Pence? (Or, Governor scolded by Judge)” as it is inaccurate.

Thank you,

Bridget Cleveland
Deputy Press Secretary
Office of Governor Mike Pence

My response:
Dear Bridget

Thank you for the note. I'm am very pleased to learn that you read the Indiana Law Blog.

However, I must disagree with you. Members of the press who I communicated with at the time of the first memo told me they were unable to obtain a copy.

I directly asked your chief counsel for a copy of his second memo shortly after I became aware of it, but he was not able to make it available to me, although he did try.

No press stories linking to either memo had appeared when I did a post on July 28th on the Love v. Pence plaintiffs' motion for reconsideration. Their federal court filings included copies of the two memos, which I immediately downloaded from PACER and made available in that ILB post.

I believe the Star story you quote today, which was published today, is the first time the July memo has appeared in the traditional media.

Thank you again for your interest in the ILB.

Marcia J. Oddi

[Updated at 12:50 PM]

The ILB has now received a second note from Ms. Cleveland and it appears apologies are in order:

Hello Marcia,

Thank you for your response.

If we failed to provide the second memo to you, we sincerely apologize as it was not intentional. We did provide the memo to a number of members of the media around that time, including the Indianapolis Star, which linked to the memo in this article published on July 9: http://www.indystar.com/story/news/politics/2014/07/09/state-recognize-june-marriages-sex-couples/12410207/.

At the time of the first memo, we received one request from Charlie Wilson with the Associated Press, and we provided the memo to him. As we aim to serve the media, we are troubled that some media members say they were unable to obtain the document. Are you able to provide the list of those who told you they requested the first memo from us and did not receive it so we may follow up with them?

Thank you,

Bridget Cleveland

Dear Bridget

It does appear some apologies are in order. I was unaware the AP ultimately obtained a copy of the first memo from the Governor's office, as I received several requests from the AP at the time for the document from which I had quoted.

Re the second memo, yes I was unable to obtain it from your office when I tried, but it appears I did ultimately obtain a copy from another source, as attested by this July 9th ILB post. I link to what I referred to as a "brief" Indianapolis Star story, which I believe was greatly expanded later that day, as it now is time-stamped: "11:08 p.m. EDT July 9, 2014."

In sum, my last paragraph in the August 19th ILB post indeed is in error and I have removed it.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on August 20, 2014 11:14 AM
Posted to Indiana Government