IV. Legal Updates
Alabama: The Alabama NAACP and the Greater Birmingham Ministries have filed a federal lawsuit against the state’s voter ID law alleging that the state violated the U.S. Constitution and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 when the law was enacted in 2011. According to Alabama.com, the lawsuit seeks to block the photo ID law and voucher requirement. The lawsuit also asks the court to impose pre-clearance obligations, which would again require the state to seek federal approval before enacting any changes to voting laws.
Florida: Earlier this week, elections officials urged the Florida Supreme Court to rule on redistricting lines as soon as possible so they may prepare for the 2016 election cycle. "We want to advocate for the voters making sure that they know where their polling locations, who their representation is,” Clay County Supervisor of Elections Chris Chambliss told a local television station. The Supreme Court approved the new congressional map on Wednesday.
Mississippi: Four Franklin County poll workers and one election commissioner were charged with voter fraud following the November 3 election. Three were accused of violating a state elections law forbidding “dishonest decisions by managers” of polling places and two others were charged with aiding or influencing a voter in preparing a ballot.
North Carolina: The North Carolina NAACP has filed a court papers officially asking a federal judge to stop the state’s photo ID law from taking effect during the March 2016 primary. While a federal trial on the law is set to begin in January, the NAACP wants the injunction because they argue allowing the law to move forward in 2016 would case “irreparable harm” to minority voters.
Tennessee: U.S. District Judge Aleta Trauger has stopped lawyers from exchanging evidence or acting on subpoenas while she considers a lawsuit brought by a group of students who argue that the state’s voter ID law is unconstitutional because it does not allow the use of student IDs as an acceptable for of ID for voting.