Pending and Recently Decided Voting-Related Court Cases

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Here is a list of recently decided and pending court cases that involve voting and fair elections:

  • ACLU vs. Schultz – At issue with this case is whether voter registration administrative rules were adopted in violation of Iowa law and whether voter registration rules exceeded the statutory authority of Iowa Secretary of State. (case ongoing, no decision made)
  • Alabama Democratic Conference vs. Alabama – At issue in this case is whether whether Alabama’s effort to redraw the lines of each majority-black district to have the same black population as it would have using 2010 census data as applied to the former district lines, when combined with the state’s goal of reducing population deviation among districts, amounted to an unconstitutional racial quota and racial. (case ongoing, no decision made)
  • Arcia vs. Detzner – At issue in this case is whether Florida’s “voter purge” violates section 2 of the Voting Rights Act by having a disproportionate effect on African-American and Hispanic citizens. (lawsuit was dismissed in June 2013. A story about that can be read here.)
  • Banfield vs. Aichele – At issue in this case is whether Pennsylvania’s use of direct recording electronic voting machines violates state or federal law and whether the secretary of the commonwealth is required to re-examine the electronic voting system at request of electors. (briefs still being filed in the case, which is pending)
  • Citizen Center vs. Gessler – At issue in this case is whether the election procedures in place at six counties in Colorado infringe on the rights to vote, political expression and speech. (Judge dismissed the case in Sept. 2013 for lack of standing)
  • Currie vs. North Carolina – At issue in this case is whether voter ID costs and requirements are unconstitutional, and whether they place an undue burden on voters. (case pending)
  • Davis vs. Perry – At issue in this case is whether Texas’ state Senate redistricting plan violates the Voting Rights Act. (Interim redistricting maps returned for further consideration in a per curiam opinion on January 20, 2012.)
  • Evenwel v. Abbot – At issue in this case is whether a three-judge district court correctly held that the “one-person, one-vote” principle under the Equal Protection Clause, which allows states to use total population, not voter population, when apportioning state legislative districts.
  • Fair Elections Ohio, The Amos Project, et al vs. Husted – At issue in this case is whether it’s constitutional for Ohio to fail to make provisions for people arrested after the absentee ballot deadline (the Saturday before the election at noon) to vote from jail. (case pending)
  • Favors vs. Cuomo – At issue in this case is whether New York’s redistricting procedure violates the due process and equal protection clauses of the 14th Amendment. (case pending)
  • Frank vs. Walker – At issue in this case is whether Wisconsin’s voter ID legislation is unconstitutional as applied to certain classes of Wisconsin voters. (Decision and Order striking down voter ID law filed 4/29/14. Notice of Appeal filed 5/12/14.)
  • Gusciora vs. Christie – At issue in this case is whether New Jersey’s use of certain voting machines violates New Jersey constitutional and statutory law. (Injunctive relief was denied, the complaint was ultimately dismissed and plaintiffs appealed)
  • Kobach vs. EAC – The plaintiffs in the case oppose harsh state laws that require documentary proof of citizenship to register to vote. (case pending, oral arguments scheduled for August)
  • Kohls vs. Martin – At issue in this case is whether an Arkansas statute requiring voters to provide proof of identity before voting violates the state constitution.  (Order on Preliminary Injunction filed 5/23/14. Defendants’ Notice of Appeal filed 5/23/14.)
  • League of Women Voters of North Carolina vs. Howard – At issue in this case is, among other things, whether the reduction in early voting days, loss of same-day registration, and elimination of out of precinct provisional voting opportunities violate the Fourteenth Amendment. (case pending)
  • League of Women Voters Wisconsin vs. Walker – At issue in the case is whether Wisconsin statute requiring voters to produce photo ID at the polls is constitutional. (Case has been decided. More information can be found here)
  • Libertarian Party of Ohio vs. Husted – At issue is whether enforcement of residency requirements for circulators of candidates’ nominating petitions violate the First Amendment. (case pending)
  • LULAC vs. Deininger – At issue in this case is whether Wisconsin’s voter ID law violates the right to vote of African-Americans and Latinos. (Decision and Order striking down voter ID law filed 4/29/14. Notice of Appeal 5/12/14.)
  • McCutcheon vs. FEC – At issue in this case is whether the aggregate federal donation limits for each election cycle violate the First Amendment. (It was decided on April 2, 2014, by a 5–4 vote,[3] reversing the decision below and remanding. Justices Roberts, Scalia, Kennedy, and Alito invalidated aggregate contribution limits as violating the First Amendment. Justice Thomas provided the necessary fifth vote, but concurred separately in the judgment while arguing that all contribution limits are unconstitutional.)
  • Milwaukee Branch of the NAACP vs. Walker – At issue in this case is whether Wisconsin statute requiring voters to produce photo ID at polls violates several provisions of the Wisconsin Constitution. (Court recently upheld the state law. More information is here.)
  • NAACP vs. Husted – At issue in this case is whether Ohio’s reduction of early voting days and elimination of same-day registration violates equal protection and section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. (case pending)
  • NEOCH vs. Husted – At issue in this case is whether an April 2010 Consent Decree requiring that provisional ballots improperly voted as a result of poll worker error still be counted is valid under Ohio law. (the preliminary injunction’s wrong-precinct remedy was affirmed, and the deficient-affirmation remedy was reversed. Some things remanded back to district court)
  • North Carolina NAACP vs. McCrory – At issue in this case is whether provisions of Voter Id requirements violate Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act and the Fourth and Fifteenth Amendments of the Constitution. (case pending)
  • Obama for America vs. Husted – At issue in this case is whether Ohio’s current election law, which restricts early voting in the three days prior to an election on certain voters, is constitutional. (A federal judge in June ordered Ohio to restore the last three days of early voting.)
  • Perez vs. Texas – At issue in this case is whether Texas’ redistricting plan violates the Constitution because it does not make a good faith effort to maintain population equality and treats inmates as residents of the counties in which they are incarcerated. (unanimous ruling in Perez v. Perry that affirms the constitutionality of the Voting Rights Act’s preclearance provisions and instructs the district court on requirements for redrawing the Texas congressional, senate and house redistricting plans)
  • Pulaski County Election Commission v. Arkansas State Board of Election Commissioners – at issue in this case is whether State Board of Election Commissioners’ adoption of Emergency Rules regarding voter qualification requirements were contrary to state statute and in violation of the separation of powers doctrine. (opinion was issued, affirmed in part and vacated in part. Order can be read here)
  • Scott v. Schedler – At issue in this case is whether Louisiana has complied with the obligations imposed on states by the federal government in the NVRA. (On January 23, 2013, the same federal judge entered a final judgment in favor of the plaintiffs. The court ruled that the Secretary of State, the Department of Children and Family Services, and the Department of Health and Hospitals had been systematically violating the NVRA. )
  • SEIU v. Husted – At issue in this case is whether the failure to ensure that all provisional ballots are properly counted violates the 14th Amendment, the right to vote, the 17th amendment and/or federal voting statutes. (recently decided – see hyper link)
  • Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder – At issue in this case is whether Sections 4(b) and 5 of the Voting Rights Act are unconstitutional. (the case was recently decided – see hyperlink).
  • Susan B. Anthony List v. Driehaus – At issue in this case is whether state laws proscribing “false” political speech are subject to pre-enforcement First Amendment review so long as the speaker maintains that the speech is true, even if others who enforce the law manifestly disagree. (this case was recently decided, see hyperlink.)
  • Texas vs. Holder – At issue in this suit is whether Texas’ voter ID law should be granted preclearance under section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. (the court ruled in favor of the plaintiff – click here or more information)
  • Texas vs. United States – At issue in this suit is whether Texas’ Recently Enacted Redistricting Plans Violate Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. (Order filed 6/18/14. Notice of Appeal filed 6/23/14.)
  • True the Vote, Inc. v. IRS – At issue in this case is whether True the Vote is exempt from Federal Income tax as a 501(c)(3) organization, whether the IRS violated True the Vote’s First Amendment right of freedom of speech and association and whether the IRS overstepped its statutory authority in requesting additional information from True the Vote. (case pending)
  • United States v. North Carolina – At issue in this case is whether House Bill 589 denies or abridges the right to vote on account of race, color, or membership in a language minority in violation of Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. (case pending)
  • United States v. Texas – At issue in this case is whether SB 14 violates Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. 1973 by denying minority voters the right to vote. (case pending)
  • Veasey v. Perry – At issue in this case is whether SB 14 violates the Voting Rights Act. (case pending)
  • Voting for America v. Skeen – At issue in this case is whether Texas’ state voter registration procedures violate the National Voter Registration Act. (case pending)
  • Wagner v. Federal Election Commission – At issue in this case is whether a federal statute barring individuals who have government contracts from making political contributions is constitutional. (case pending)

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