After issuing an order in May requesting an amicus brief from the Solicitor General, the Michigan Supreme Court on July 5 turned down the Governor's request for an advisory opinion on the Right to Work legislation enacted at the end of the last legislative session, In re Request for Advisory Opinion Regarding Constitutionality of 2012 PA 348 and 2012 PA 349. Also on July 5, the Court agreed to hear Makowski v. Governor and Secretary of State. Makowski's nonparolable life sentence was commuted by Governor Granholm in the final days of her last term in office and then revoked. The parties were directed to brief the following issues:
(1) what authority, if any, the courts of this State have to review actions taken by the Governor under the authority conferred by 1963 Const, Art V, § 14; (2) how the separation of powers doctrine and the principle of nonjusticiable political questions relate to that constitutional authority; (3) whether the commutation of the plaintiff’s sentence was completed before the Governor took steps to revoke it and whether the Court has the authority to address this question; (4) whether the power to grant clemency under the cited constitutional provision also includes the power to rescind, revoke or otherwise overturn a decision to grant clemency; and (5) to the extent the courts have the authority to address the question, whether the Governor in this case exceeded the authority granted by the constitution by revoking the commutation of sentence given to the plaintiff after it was signed by the Governor, sealed by and filed with the Secretary of State, and delivered to the Michigan Department of Corrections.