California: State takes issue with Contra Costa elections chief over double-voting concerns | East Bay Times

The California Secretary of State’s office is taking exception to the Contra Costa County elections chief’s call for a change in how vote-by-mail voters are accommodated at election-day polling places, and wants to see evidence backing allegations made last week that following state rules allowed double-voting in the June 7 primary election. Secretary of State spokesman Sam Mahood said Monday his office as asked Contra Costa Registrar of Voters Joe Canciamilla to provide evidence that 113 people successfully voted twice in the primary election in that county. Canciamilla said this week he will comply.

Delaware: Governor signs law ending financial bar for felons to vote | Associated Press

Convicted felons in Delaware have one fewer hurdle to jump before having their voting rights restored. State lawmakers last month approved a bill that allows felons to vote before they have paid all fines, fees and restitution. Gov. Jack Markell who included the proposal in his State of the State address in January, planned to sign the legislation Wednesday at the Achievement Center in Wilmington.

Kansas: Kris Kobach’s latest sneak attack on voting rights of 17,000 Kansans | The Kansas City Star

Even a fellow Republican legislator on Tuesday questioned the timing of Secretary of State Kris Kobach’s latest attempt to prevent people from having full voting rights in Kansas. But the query from GOP Sen. Vicki Schmidt of Topeka was pushed aside as a Kansas board approved a policy that essentially could prevent at least 17,000 Kansans from voting in local or state elections in 2016. Schmidt wanted to know why Kobach waited until the last possible moment to get the Kansas Rules and Regulations Board to issue its opinion on rules governing the Aug. 2 and Nov. 8 elections. “Why is it an emergency now?” Schmidt asked. Her excellent point: Kobach could have brought this issue before the full Legislature when it met in special session in late June. But he didn’t. That’s an appalling attitude to have toward thousands of Kansas voters, because it denied their elected representatives from taking steps to restore full voting rights to them.

Louisiana: Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser draws ire of Secretary of State Tom Schedler with statements about voting laws | State Politics |

Louisiana Secretary of State Tom Schedler has blasted recent remarks from Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser about the state’s voting laws as being “irresponsible.” The News Star reported on Monday that Nungesser, a Republican who took office in January, told the Ouachita Parish Republican Women that he wants better Republican voter turnout, but he claimed that Democrats busing in voters during the state’s early voting period remains a hurdle. “They don’t have to bring them to their precinct,” the report quotes Nungesser as saying. “They bring them all to one place, and if they can’t find their name, they’re allowed to fill out a piece of paper and vote. And if the election is not contested, that vote will count. Now they have a whole week to bus people who have no idea why they’re going there but to pull a lever for someone.” The News Star story didn’t include a response from Schedler, who is also a Republican, but on Tuesday, the Secretary of State’s office sent a news release criticizing Nungesser’s remarks as “nonsensical” and expressed personal offense.

Maryland: Congressional districts violate First Amendment, lawsuit says | The Washington Post

Maryland’s infamously contorted congressional district map was challenged in federal court on Tuesday by an American University law student who says the boundaries violate the First Amendment rights of Republican voters. The suit was thrown out by a federal judge in 2014, a decision upheld by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit. But the Supreme Court ruled in December that plaintiff Stephen Shapiro was improperly denied a hearing before a three-judge panel. He got his day in court in Baltimore on Tuesday, along with plaintiffs in two other lawsuits challenging Maryland’s 2011 redistricting. Shapiro questions the legality of gerrymandered boundaries approved by Democratic state lawmakers to ensure that seven of Maryland’s eight congressional seats would be under their party’s control.

Nevada: Judge dismisses GOP Assembly hopeful’s election challenge | Associated Press

A Las Vegas judge tossed the case of a Republican Nevada Assembly candidate who challenged the results of a primary race she lost last month and wanted two precincts in the Moapa Valley area to cast their ballots once again. Judge Elissa Cadish dismissed a case Tuesday that was filed by Tina Trenner, one of six losing candidates who are challenging their election results. Trenner argued that errors on voter registration cards sent to people in the Logandale area in December could have caused confusion in the race, which she lost to Pahrump Assemblyman James Oscarson by 133 votes. “There was an error,” Cadish said. “However, I do not have evidence to demonstrate that those errors are sufficient to change the results.”

Oregon: Groups help Oregonians with disabilities to vote | Oregon News Service

More than 800,000 Oregonians are living with a disability, and this week the attention is on making sure they have an opportunity to vote. It’s National Disability Voter Registration Week, and groups including Deaf People United and the Autism Society of Oregon are assisting with voter registration and voting efforts among the disability community. Esther Harlow, voting rights advocate for Disability Rights Oregon, said it’s an important week. “It’s making sure that everyone understands that people with disabilities have a right to vote in Oregon,” she said. “Regardless of whether they have a guardian, regardless of whether they can read their ballots, they still have that right to vote.”

Ireland: Referendum on voting rights for the Irish abroad planned for 2017 | Irish Central

A referendum, planned for early next year, on Ireland’s election law could lead to the country’s 800,000 passport holders who live outside the state getting the right to vote in Irish presidential elections. The Minister for the Diaspora Joe McHugh unveiled plans for the referendum during a special event in Kampala, Uganda attended by Irish citizens living in the country. McHugh admitted that if the diaspora voting in the presidential election went well then voting rights for emigrants could be expanded to include the right to vote in general elections. Currently there are 800,000 Irish people with Irish passports living outside the state in 120 countries around the world. They currently do not have the right to vote on matters in Ireland. The proposed referendum, if passed, would see this law change.

Japan: Vote opens door to constitution change | Associated Press

A resounding election victory for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s ruling bloc has opened the door a crack for his long-cherished ambition to revise the constitution for the first time since it was enacted in 1947 — a behind-the-scenes agenda that could over time change Japan’s future. Gains in parliamentary elections Sunday mean that Abe’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party, with the help of coalition partner Komeito and fringe groups supporting constitutional change, now can cobble together the crucial two-thirds majority in the 242-member upper house needed to propose revision and put it to a referendum. The LDP and Komeito already have a two-thirds majority in the lower house. Holding a so-called “supermajority” in both houses is rare, and the LDP’s long-term goal of constitutional revision has never seemed so realistic.

United Kingdom: Labour executive rules Jeremy Corbyn must be on leadership ballot | The Guardian

Jeremy Corbyn was jubilant after the party’s ruling national executive committee (NEC) decided his name should automatically appear on the ballot paper in the leadership contest triggered by Angela Eagle. In a crunch meeting at Labour’s Westminster headquarters that began at 2pm on Tuesday and continued into the evening, NEC members, including Corbyn himself, voted 18-14 in a secret ballot that he was not subject to the rule that forces candidates to show they have the backing of 20% of the party’s MPs and MEPs. However, in a separate decision taken after Corbyn had left the room, the NEC ruled that only those who have been members for more than six months will be allowed to vote – while new supporters will be given two days to sign up as registered supporters to vote in the race, but only if they are willing to pay £25 – far higher than the £3 fee many Corbyn backers paid in the contest last year.