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Base closure cases dismissed in Illinois, New Jersey

[JURIST] A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich [official website] that attempted to stop the military from moving part of the 183rd Fighter Wing out of the state. The governor had argued that the unit was part of the state militia and had asked the judge to issue a temporary restraining order to prevent the Base Closure and Realignment Commission [official website] from sending its report to President Bush on Thursday. Judge Jeanne Scott ruled that Illinois suffered no economic loss because the base closure was not yet final and dismissed the case. Meanwhile, in New Jersey, a federal judge issued a ruling on Tuesday night that federal courts have no jurisdiction to overturn BRAC recommendations [Star-Ledger report] when asked to by state politicians. This case, which involved the closure of Fort Monmouth, is expected to be appealed. These rulings are inconsistent with other recent base closure cases around the country. A federal judge in Connecticut issued a temporary restraining order last month and scheduled a hearing on Connecticut's challenge to a BRAC commission recommendation [JURIST report] to move or retire fighter planes in the state. In Pennsylvania, a district court upheld the governor's claim [JURIST report] that the military needs his permission to dissolve an Air Guard division. Additionally, a federal judge is scheduled to hear arguments this week [JURIST report] in a Missouri case challenging the closure of the Air National Guard base in St. Louis. AP has more.

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