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Election Law @ Moritz

Election Law @ Moritz

Information & Analysis

MN Senate Race: 12/3 Update - Ritchie orders absentees to be reviewed by local officials

Secretary of State Mark Ritchie has ordered local election officials to review roughly 12,000 absentee ballots to be sure they were rejected for the four allowable reasons to reject absentee ballots under Minnesota law.  See the report here.  An absentee ballot may be rejected if it lacks any of the following: (1) the voter's name in substantially the same form as on the ballot application, (2) a signed federal oath prescribed by HAVA, or (3) the same identification number as the voter submitted on the ballot application, if the voter has such an ID number.  The fourth reason that a ballot may be rejected is if the voter has already voted at that election, either in person or by absentee ballot.  Ritchie told officials to make a "fifth pile" of absentee ballots that may have been wrongly rejected but not to count them yet.  Franken gained 37 votes from a cache of 171 ballots in Ramsey County that were found to have not been counted on election day due to machine and human error.  Coleman leads Franken in the administrative recount by 303 votes and has challenged 3,093 ballots while Franken has challenged 2,910 ballots according to the Star Tribune's recount page here.  The Franken campaign claims to be down by only about 50 votes according to the decisions made by election judges at the recount tables before any challenges are taken into account.  Their assumption is that most of these calls will be affirmed by the canvassing board when they meet to review challenged ballots.  See the report here.  With Republican Saxby Chambliss' win yesterday in Georgia's Senate runoff election, the Senate race in Minnesota will remain intense but will no longer decide whether the Democrats will have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. 


Daniel P. Tokaji

What's the Matter with Kobach?

Daniel P. Tokaji

By "Kobach," I mean the Kobach v. EAC case in which the Tenth Circuit heard oral argument Monday – rather than its lead plaintiff, Kansas’ controversial Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who argued the position of his state and the State of Arizona. This post discusses what’s at issue in the case, where the district court went wrong, and what the Tenth Circuit should do.

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In the News

Daniel P. Tokaji

Ohio treasurer receives OK to host town halls

Professor Daniel Tokaji was quoted in an article from the Associated Press about an attorney general opinion that allows the Ohio treasurer to conduct telephone town halls using public money. The opinion will likely have broad ramifications for the upcoming elections, Tokaji said.

“As a practical matter, while that legal advice is certainly right, very serious concerns can arise about whether these are really intended to inform Ohio constituents about the operations of his office or if they’re campaign events,” he said.

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Info & Analysis

Judge Denies Motion for Preliminary Injunction in NC Case

U.S. District Judge Thomas D. Schroeder denied the motion for a preliminary injunction sought by the plaintiffs in a case challenging a new North Carolina voting law as violating the Voting Rights Act and the federal Constitution. Judge Schroeder also denied the defendants' motion for judgment on the pleadings. The case is North Carolina NAACP v. McCrory.

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