Representative Joseph M. Palacios (R-Saipan) believes that the CNMI Supreme Court did not fully addressed the certified question pertaining to gambling law.
Palacios yesterday asked the high court to conduct a rehearing and/or consider its ruling.
Palacios filed the motion pro se or without a lawyer.
Last month, the CNMI Supreme Court ruled that a municipality does not have the authority to pass a law allowing gambling.
The justices answered in the negative to a certified question whether a local law, enacted to Article II, Section 6 of the CNMI Constitution by a senatorial district of the legislature, a Commonwealth law under Article XXI of the NMI Constitution.
A local law cannot set aside the ban on gambling found in the CNMI Constitution, said the Supreme Court's opinion issued by Associate Justice John A. Manglona and justices pro tem Perry B. Inos and Herbert D. Soll.
In his motion for rehearing and/or reconsideration, Palacios said the Supreme Court did not follow the rules covering clarification by not properly notifying the parties in the case to amend their certification order and change the language of the original question.
Palacios said the Legislature is still in a continued state of misinformation about what constitutes the entire Commonwealth body of law, since the Judicial Branch has decided to rewrite the Legislature's question instead of answering the full question that was originally-not partially-accepted by the high court.
He said their original question is: Is a local law, enacted pursuant to Article II, Section 6 of the NMI Constitution by a senatorial district or the legislature, a Commonwealth law for all purposes, including but not limited to, Article XXI of the NMI Constitution?
“The court decided on its own to step outside the boundaries of the democratic doctrine of the separation of powers and draft its own legislative question surrounding only Article XXI to possibly fit an agenda to answer the critics of gambling on Saipan,” the lawmaker said.
Palacios said the justices relied their opinion more on the Article XXI “full transcript,” which according to him had several typographical errors and omissions, and basically dismissed the partial transcript that was verified by the Northern Marianas College archives.
Palacios said the justices failed to note that the “full transcript” was never officially signed off by the 2nd Constitutional Convention president Herman T. Guerrero.
He said the “full transcript” is essentially invalid and makes the court's selective argument against him subject to bias and errors.