Court decisions are not to be determined by the then extant pubic opinion. But this Federal court judge wants public input on the negotiated Portland-federal justice agreement on police reforms. This apparently came about because the Portland police union aims to block excessive force agreement.
Granted that the lawsuit filed by the feds was only to provide the basis for providing a legal basis for the feds to enforce the settlement agreement with the city, but still like any other lawsuit the union, and possibly others, has the legal right to intervene to protects its previously established rights.
It raises serious questions about the ability of these two parties to change or modify another agreement between the city and its police union. Think what you want about the collective bargaining process - the agreement that comes from that process is not subject to modification or change by another agreement in which the union had no part or voice.
Lawsuits, whether intended as a formality or not, are not to be determined by public opinion, especially when that public opinion will be represented by a minority influence.