LDF files Amicus Curiae Brief in Moore v. Harper at the U.S. Supreme Court
Lawyers Democracy Fund (LDF) filed an amicus brief at the United States Supreme Court in Moore v. Harper, a case that explores the ability of state legislatures to prescribe the times, places, and manners of elections under the Elections Clause of the United States Constitution and what role state judicial branches can play in that process.
The United States Constitution clearly and succinctly states that the “times, places and manner of holding elections for senators and representatives, shall be prescribed in each state by the legislature thereof.” U.S. Const. Art. I, § 4, cl. 1. While this language has been historically recognized to be an exclusive grant of authority to state legislatures, this case brings forth a simple but complicated question: what role do state judiciaries have in this process?
LDF’s brief took an academic approach to the issue, highlighting the longstanding and exclusive role that state legislatures possess under the Elections Clause to prescribe the rules of elections and how the Elections Clause fails to empower state judicial branches with the authority to nullify the regulations passed by the legislature and replace them with regulations of the state courts’ own devising.
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LDF Asks the U.S. Supreme Court to Vacate Troublesome Third Circuit Opinion that Wrongly Applied the Materiality Provision of the Voting Rights Act
Since its enactment over 50 years ago, the Materiality Provision of the Voting Rights Act has been interpreted to preclude election officials from disqualifying a voter’s registration for immaterial errors, such as minor misspelling errors or for other trivial reasons.
Yet, the Third Circuit recently broke new ground in a novel decision that held the Materiality Provision could be used to preempt commonsense and meaningful ballot qualification requirements, namely Pennsylvania’s requirement that voters include the date on their absentee ballots.
To defend the compelling interests that states have in enforcing reasonable ballot qualification requirements––such as date, signature, and delivery requirements––LDF filed an amicus brief at the United States Supreme Court in Ritter v. Migliori, asking the Court to vacate the Third Circuit’s abhorrent decision.
LDF Files Amicus Brief at the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals to Defend Election Integrity in Florida
After the 2020 election, Florida enacted S.B. 90 to implement several election safeguards that boost voter confidence and ensure uniform election administration across the state. After several of the provisions of the bill were challenged in court, a federal court struck down three of the challenged provisions but left the remaining provisions in place. On appeal, two provisions were at issue – SB 90’s drop box and voter non-solicitation provisions.
LDF filed an amicus curiae brief at the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in League of Women Voters v. Florida Secretary of State to highlight just how objectively reasonable Florida’s new safeguards for absentee ballot drop boxes are and how Florida is among countless other states that prevent electioneering and voter influence near polling locations.
Montana’s Repeal of Election Day Registration
In passing H.B. 176 (2021), Montana became the first and only state to ever repeal Election Day Registration after implementing it. In doing so, the legislature sought to ease the administrative burden on election officials, reduce long lines at polling locations, and strengthen election integrity, all while still allowing voters to utilize Same Day Registration during the early voting period until noon the day before the election.
LDF published an in-depth memo exploring the benefits and drawbacks of Election Day Registration and why Montana’s recent repeal makes a meaningful difference for efficient and secure elections. Additionally, LDF’s memo explains how, rather than being a partisan tool, H.B. 176 provides a road map for how states can go about amending or repealing unsuccessful and burdensome election reforms.
To read LDF’s memo in full, click here.
LDF Calls for Clear Redistricting Standards at the U.S. Supreme Court
LDF filed an amicus brief at United States Supreme Court to advocate for clear legal standards for redistricting maps in Merrill v. Milligan, consolidated with Merrill v. Caster.
In its brief, LDF highlighted the dilemma states face in the redistricting process as they attempt to comply with both Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, which requires the consideration of race in the redistricting process, and the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment, which restricts the use of race. LDF asks the Supreme Court to issue clear and meaningful standards that states can use in the redistricting process going forward to avoid unnecessary litigation.
On Tuesday, Lawyers Democracy Fund (LDF) filed an amicus brief at the United States Supreme Court in Moore v. Harper, a case that explores the ability of state legislatures to prescribe the times, places, and manners of elections under the Elections Clause of the United States Constitution and what role…
On Friday, August 26, 2022, a dangerous initiative that would have wiped away numerous election safeguards in Arizona and substituted them with H.R. 1–style policies failed to qualify for the November ballot after a weeks-long legal battle proving the initiative failed to gather enough valid petition signatures. Lawyers Democracy…
Ignoring the will of North Carolina voters—who by a large majority adopted a constitutional amendment in 2018 to require voter ID in elections—the North Carolina Supreme Court called into question the legitimacy of the constitutional amendment in a ruling last Friday. In its opinion, the liberal justices on the…