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Election Law @ Moritz

Election Law @ Moritz


Information & Analysis

Coleman back to MN S.Ct. over Absentee Ballots

On New Year's Eve, Norm Coleman filed an emergency motion in the Minnesota Supreme Court claiming that the agreed-to procedures for reviewing rejected absentee ballots had broken down and violated Equal Protection and Bush v. Gore.  Focusing on absentee ballots rejected because the signature on the return envelope does not match the signature on the application for an absentee ballot, Coleman alleges that the procedures for reviewing these ballots differ from county to county, risking that some similarly situated ballots will be counted will others will not.  The motion asks that all absentee ballots that either campaign or local officials believe to have been improperly rejected be submitted to the Secretary of State for a uniform review. 

If the Franken campaign has submitted a brief to the court in response, it is not yet available.  But reports in the Star-Tribune and Pioneer Press indicate that Franken will oppose this motion as an improper "do-over" of procedures largely completed already, with the Secretary of State taking the same position.  It is unclear whether local officials will also object to being excluded from the process, especially as the legal premise for the review procedures undertaken pursuant to the Minnesota Supreme Court's previous order was that, prior to an election contest, review of rejected absentee ballots could only occur with the consent of local officials.  (For other documents in this case, see here.)

Commentary

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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