IV. Legal Updates
Illinois: The Chicago Election Board has entered into a settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice to bring the city’s polling places into compliance with the American with Disabilities Act.
Indiana: Common Cause and the NAACP have filed a federal lawsuit against Marion County arguing that the county’s single location for early voting provides unequal access to the ballot. According to The Indiana Business Journal, the suit takes aim at the system in which one of the three unelected members of the Marion County Election Board, most recently Republican Party member Maura Hoff, has vetoed multiple early-voting locations in the state’s most populous county. The result has been sometimes-long lines at the only location for early voting, the Marion County Clerk’s office in the Indianapolis City-County Building.
New Jersey: Superior Court Judge Ernest M. Caposela has ruled that state law prohibits slates that are running under different slogans to occupy the same line on a ballot and therefore a new primary ballot in Wayne must be created.
North Carolina: A three-judge panel has again put a temporary stop to a law that changes control of the state’s elections board. Judges Jesse B. Caldwell III of Gaston County and Todd Burke of Forsyth County, the Democrats on the panel, approved the block on the law until May 10. Judge Jeff Foster, a Republican from Greenville, voted to deny the temporary restraining order.
Texas: According to the Associated Press, minority rights groups have told federal judges that Texas needs new election maps for 2018. A three-judge panel in San Antonio did not immediately decide a next step. Since March, the same court has found intentional discrimination in both congressional and Statehouse maps originally drawn by Republicans in 2011, a year after U.S. Census Bureau figures showed that minorities were driving Texas' explosive growth. The court has set a July 10 trial date.
Wisconsin: Attorney General Brad Schimel said this week that an investigation into voter fraud remains open although he had previously said that the investigation was closed.