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electionlineWeekly — November 16, 2017

Table of Contents

 VI. Legal Updates

Arizona: Attorney General Mark Brnovich has ruled that county election officials may maintain separate voter registration databases, but that they are still legally required to send voter information to the secretary of state’s office.

Also in Arizona, in a 15-page complaint, a coalition of voting rights groups charge that state agencies are violating the National Voter Registration Act and say that if the problems are not rectified within 90 days, they will take the matter to court. The complaint alleges that there are flaws in both state statutes and the process used by state agencies to register people to vote.

Minnesota: The U.S. Supreme Court will hear a Minnesota case about what not to wear to the polls on election day. The Minnesota Voters Alliance is challenging the state law that forbids political badges, buttons or other insignia inside polling places.

Ohio: The U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals based in Cincinnati has overturned a lower court ruling that had ruled against blind voters in Ohio who claimed the state’s paper absentee ballots illegally forced them to rely on others to vote. found the lower court should not have simply accepted the secretary of state’s arguments on the matter. It sent the case back for further proceedings. “Without proof that the proposed [Americans with Disabilities Act] accommodation is unreasonable or incompatible with Ohio’s election system, defendant’s defense based on an allegation alone is insufficient,” Judge Richard Allen Griffin wrote.

Pennsylvania: In a 4-3 vote, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled that a case challenging how congressional districts were drawn six years ago may proceed on a compressed schedule. The commonwealth has until December 31 to issue findings of fact and legal conclusions.