HARTFORD, CT (AP / CBSNewYork) – Gov. Dan Malloy has filed a protective order against a fellow Democrat who is suing him for alleged slander.

WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau On The Story

The governor filed a motion for the protective order against U.S. Senate candidate Lee Whitnum on Tuesday in Stamford Superior Court. Aides to Malloy haven’t disclosed why he wants the order.

Whitnum filed a slander lawsuit against Malloy in May 2010 before he was governor. She claims Malloy was wrong to call comments she made anti-Semitic. She had repeatedly criticized the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and the billions of dollars of U.S. aid to Israel, but said she hadn’t spoken disparagingly about any religious group.

As attorney Hugh Keefe explains, it’s not a restraining order, it simply seeks to have the court slow down the filing of baseless and frivolous lawsuits.

“There’ll be no deposition of the governor. There’ll be no interrogatories permitted, no questions permitted to be asked in writing, and ending it until the errors that were previously made by her, the plaintiff, in her pleadings are corrected, if they ever are. If they’re not, then the case is over,” he told WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau.

Says Keefe, it’s not at all uncommon for public officials to be the subject of harassing lawsuits.

Malloy’s comments came during the 2008 Democratic primary between Whitnum and now-Rep. Jim Himes.

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