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Raymond v. Howard

United States District Court, Ninth Circuit

May 3, 2013

Robert RAYMOND, Plaintiff,
v.
Barbara HOWARD, Sheldon D. Johnson, Jim McCauley, Kammi Foote, Lee Lundigran, Ken Baird, Sheryl Thur, Austin Erdman, Kathy Darling Allen, Beverly Ross, Freddie Oakley, and Kathleen Williams, Defendants.

ORDER DENYING EACH MOVANT'S MOTION FOR COMPULSORY JOINDER; ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE WHY RELATED ACTIONS SHOULD NOT BE STAYED

GARLAND E. BURRELL, Jr., Senior District Judge.

Defendants Howard, Johnson, McCauley, Foote, Lundigran, Thur, Erdman, Allen, Ross, Oakley, and Williams (hereinafter "Defendants") each move to compel the joinder of the California Secretary of State ("Secretary") and California Attorney General ("Attorney General") as defendants. Each movant argues these state officers are required parties under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure ("Rule") 19. Plaintiff opposes each motion, arguing compulsory joinder is inappropriate because "the state non-party defendants refuse to join the action, have not requested joinder, and... the present parties can adequately represent the interest of the state...." (E.g., Pl.'s Opp'n to Def. Williams' Mot. for Compulsory Joinder, Raymond v. Williams, No. 2:12-cv-02259, at 1:25-28, ECF No. 16.)

I. BACKGROUND

Plaintiff seeks, in each related case, declaratory and injunctive relief against various county clerk-registrars to prevent them from enforcing certain California election laws that preclude non-residents from circulating state initiative petitions. An order issued in each case, certifying under 28 U.S.C. ยง 2403(b) that Plaintiff is challenging the constitutionality of state statutes. The Attorney General was served a copy of the certifications, and the hearing on each Defendant's joinder motion was continued since it was unclear whether the Attorney General would elect to intervene. The Attorney General did not intervene within the time period anticipated in that order.

II. LEGAL STANDARD

"Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 19 governs compulsory party joinder in federal district courts." E.E.O.C. v. Peabody W. Coal Co. , 610 F.3d 1070, 1077 (9th Cir. 2010).

Rule 19 provides in relevant part[1]:

(a) Persons Required to Be Joined if Feasible.
(1) Required Party. A person who is subject to service of process and whose joinder will not deprive the court of subject-matter jurisdiction must be joined as a party if:
(A) in that person's absence, the court cannot accord complete relief among existing parties; or
(B) that person claims an interest relating to the subject of the action and is so situated that disposing of the action in the person's absence may:
(i) as a practical matter impair or impede the person's ability to protect the interest; or
(ii) leave an existing party subject to a substantial risk of incurring double, multiple, or otherwise inconsistent obligations because of the interest.
(2) Joinder by Court Order. If a person has not been joined as required, the court must order that the person be made a party. A person who refuses to join as a plaintiff may be made either a ...

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