So Cuccinelli has subpoenaed all of Mann's old research papers and emails from his time as a professor at UVA. The investigation is being carried out under the "Fraud Against Taxpayers Act," so we assume that Cuccinelli wants to charge Mann with somehow carrying out his research in a fraudulent way.
This is a very bad idea. Lots of people disagree with Mann, and his papers are so controversial that he has already been investigated by a couple of scientific panels. Despite all the scrutiny, nobody has been able to show that he falsified any of his data. He may or may not be a crank, but he works very hard and knows a lot about climate science. To subject him and his colleagues (since Mann has moved on to Penn State, it is those left in the department who will have to comply with the request) to this sort of legal harassment is just wrong. If Mann's sin has been to overly politicize his research, Cuccinelli has done the same thing at a much higher level -- at least Mann has no authority to force his views on anyone, and can't drag his enemies into court and charge them with fraud.
I was pleased to see that one of Mann's most inveterate scientific opponents, global warming skeptic Thomas Fuller, has written an open letter to Cucccinelli:
No matter what has prompted your investigation, there is no doubt that it will be interpreted as a witch hunt. If you are in fact investigating a credentialed scientist for results that do not suit your political opinion, that interpretation is correct. Unless you can reveal to the public prima facie evidence that shows cause for this investigation, I beg you to reconsider. There are ample avenues of professional and academic recourse for people like me who think he has done something wrong. But being wrong is not a crime, and intimidating scientists not a path that this country, including I presume Virginians, should ever pursue. You may consult with colleagues in Salem to determine how long it takes to live this type of thing down.