V. Legal Updates
Supreme Court of the United States: By a 5-4 ruling the nation’s highest court upheld Arizona’s use of an independent redistricting commission to draw Congressional maps. “So long as a State has ‘redistricted in the manner provided by the law thereof’ — as Arizona did by utilizing the independent commission procedure in its Constitution — the resulting redistricting plan becomes the presumptively governing map,” Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote in the majority opinion.
In addition to ruling on Arizona’s redistricting commission, SCOTUS also refused to take up the issue of proof-of-citizenship on voter registration forms. The justices upheld a ruling by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals that said neither Arizona nor Kansas can demand the federal Election Assistance Commission add a proof-of-citizenship requirement to the federal registration form.
Georgia: A Douglas County man who was asked to remove is pro-NRA hat before entering a polling place has agreed to dismiss his lawsuit against county elections officials after officials agreed to a new policy. Under the new policy, the county board of elections and registration will not question clothing or other materials that refer to a person, organization or viewpoint on an issue that’s not currently on the ballot.
North Carolina: U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Schroeder has ruled that claims against the voter ID provision will be kept out of the July 13 trial and instead considered at a later date. The ruling follows changes the Legislature made to ID requirements last week.
Ohio: Secretary of State Jon Husted referred 14 cases of suspected illegal voting in the November 2014 election to prosecutors for further review and possible prosecution.
Pennsylvania: Municipal Court Judge Roger F. Gordon has dismissed witness-intimidation charges against the relative of four North Philadelphia election workers who are accused of adding votes to a voting machine after the polls closed in November 2014.