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Election Law @ Moritz

Election Law @ Moritz


Information & Analysis

Colorado SoS Race: Gap Exceeds Uncounted Ballots

The AP now reports that less than 13,000 uncounted ballots remain in Democratic-leaning counties, thereby making it mathematically impossible for Ken Gordon to overtake Mike Coffman’s 21,163-vote lead as of Monday afternoon. In fact, AP also quotes Gordon as saying, “If those numbers are accurate, then I wish Mike Coffman the best in his new job.” But this statement was not yet a formal concession of defeat. From this statement as well as previous ones, however, it does appear that Gordon would be unwilling to pursue litigation in an effort to overturn the result of the election if, as is now virtually certain, the final count of the ballot shows him coming up short. One possible basis for such litigation (at least theoretically), were Gordon of a different mindset, would be that an unknown number of voters were prevented from casting ballots last Tuesday as a result of polling place problems. As another report today recounted, these problems were not confined to Denver, but extended elsewhere: Davidson County saw polling place lines of over 5 and ½ hours in length. Even so, it would appear difficult for any such litigation raising this kind of claim to document enough disenfranchised voters statewide to attack a 20,000, or even 10,000, vote victory among ballots actually cast. Gordon, assuming he loses this Secretary of State election, still can go back to his current job as majority leader in the state’s Senate. The polling place problems in Colorado, however, still have the potential of affecting some other races in the state, including a Denver tax levy for which “yes” votes exceed “no” votes by about 1500.

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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