Thursday, September 22, 2016

Electionline Weekly Sept-22-2016

Legislative Updates

Federal Legislation: Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Georgia) has introduced two bills that would help secure the Nation’s Voting system. The Election Infrastructure and Security Promotion Act of 2016 would require the Dept. of Homeland Security to designate Voting systems as critical infrastructure. The Election Integrity Act would require all new Voting systems to include a Paper Trail.

Florida: Supporters of an effort to restore the Voting Rights to ex-felons gathered almost 71,000 signatures from registered voters to force the issue onto the ballot. The Amendment would allow most convicted felons to have their Voting Rights automatically restored after they have completed their prison sentences and probation. Felons convicted of murder or a sexual offense would not be eligible.

Michigan: Rep. Jon Hoadley (D-Kalamazoo) is urging the Legislature to formally undo its ban of on Straight-Ticket-Voting.

New Jersey: Democrats put off an attempt to override Gov. Chris Christie’s (R) veto of Automatic Voter Registration Legislation when it was discovered that there weren’t enough supportive Legislators in the Assembly on the day of the planned vote. Assemblyman Craig Coughlin (D-Middlesex) said the effort will be revisited at a later date.

Legal Updates

Georgia: U.S. District Court Judge William S. Duffey, Jr. has ordered Secretary of State Brian Kemp to release more detailed public records about the State deciding to reject applications trying to register to vote. Duffey said the “threatened injury” over blocking the release of the information outweighs the harm to the state.

Kansas: Shawnee County District Judge Larry Hendricks said this week that his previous ruling requiring Counties to count the ballots from those who have not proven their citizenship stands for the November election as well.

Nevada: Federal Judge Miranda Du will hear arguments on October 4 in the lawsuit filed by two Paiute tribes in Nevada that are suing Washoe and Mineral Counties alleging that the Counties violated the Voting Rights Act by disenfranchising a protected group.

Utah: U.S. District Judge Jill Parish said this week that she will likely rule soon on whether or not San Juan County must take additional steps to ensure that Navajo voters have the same access to polling places that other residents do. The Navajo Human Rights Commission and residents of the Navajo Nation in San Juan County sued in February, saying the County had violated the Federal Voting Rights Act by closing polling places and moving toward a Mail-Only voting system, hindering Navajos' access to the ballot box.

Virginia: In a unanimous one-page order, the Supreme Court of Virginia said that it would not force Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) to return to Court to prove that he was complying with a previous Court Order when restoring the Voting Rights to ex-felons.

A three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments regarding the State’s Voter ID law.

NYC Wins When Everyone Can Vote! Michael H. Drucker
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