Florida: Scott won’t extend voter registration deadline as Hurricane Matthew threatens state | Politico

Florida Gov. Rick Scott, the chairman of the super PAC backing Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, has refused to extend the Tuesday deadline for voter registration as requested by Hillary Clinton’s campaign due to Hurricane Matthew. “Everybody has had a lot of time to register,” Scott said during a storm update Thursday night in the state’s Emergency Operations Center. “On top of that, we’ve got lots of opportunities to vote: Early voting, absentee voting and Election Day. So, I don’t intend to make any changes.” The decision from the political leader of the nation’s most-important swing state – one Trump needs to win to keep his White House hopes alive — comes at a crucial time in the presidential race in Florida, where polls show Clinton is starting to nudge ahead of her GOP rival.

South Carolina: Judge hears arguments in Furman student voter registration lawsuit | WSPA

Students from Furman University will soon learn whether or not they can register to vote in Greenville County. Thursday, a judge heard arguments on a lawsuit claiming they were blocked from registering using their university address. “I hope that we will get a verdict quickly so we will be able to register as many people as possible in the next 36 hours,” said plaintiff, Katherine West. The clock ticks down on voter registration deadline, but for the Furman sophomore, she tried mailing in her Greenville County application more than a month ago. She says she was sent a questionnaire instead of her registration card. The list of questions is sent to inquiring college students is part of a long standing Greenville County election commission policy to determine if the student is a serious resident of the area. Now, it is at the center of a lawsuit filed against the state and the county election commissions.

South Carolina: Voter registration deadline not extended, still mail-in registrations discrepancies exist | WJBF

We are just a little over a month from Election Day and time is winding down to register to vote. Many voters may not be aware that when you send in that voter registration card could be the deciding factor, when it comes to whether a vote is counted. Federal law requires all mailed-in voter registration forms to be in 30 days before Election Day and that falls on a Sunday this year. That following Monday is Columbus Day, so many states have extended the voter registration deadline, but that’s not the case in South Carolina. South Carolina has made it simple for people to register to vote. More than 100,000 Aiken County residents have signed-up in person, online, or by mail.

South Dakota: Amendment V groups clash over campaign finance accusation | Argus Leader

Two organizations that urged supporters to donate money to a ballot committee that is promoting a constitutional amendment in South Dakota denied Thursday that they broke state campaign finance laws. The Vote Yes on V campaign took contributions from two outside groups, Open Primaries and TakeItBack.org, that raised and collected money explicitly to back the ballot measure. While outside groups are free to donate money to ballot committees like Yes on V, state law forbids those organizations from contributing money that was “raised or collected by the organization for the purpose of influencing the ballot question.” In at least two instances, Open Primaries and TakeItBack.org solicited donations citing their efforts to fund the South Dakota amendment, said Will Mortenson, the chairman of Vote No on V. In an email last month, Open Primaries urged its supporters to donate money to Vote Yes on V, which the group promised to match two-to-one to help fund Vote Yes on V television ads. TakeItBack.org also released an email to supporters this week endorsing Amendment V.

Editorials: Texas’s Voter-Registration Laws Are Straight Out of the Jim Crow Playbook | Ari Berman/The Nation

At 10 am on a Tuesday morning in September, Babatunde Adeleye, a 33-year-old naturalized US citizen from Nigeria, arrived at the Bexar County Elections Department in San Antonio. It’s a brand-new building in an otherwise unappealing industrial park along the interstate, 10 minutes south of downtown. There were inspirational posters on the wall featuring American flags and sunsets, highlighting words like “success” and “momentum.” Tunde, as everyone calls him, stood up, raised his right hand, and took an oath to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States and of this State.” He was being deputized not as a cop, but instead to register voters. The parallels, however, were impossible to ignore: Texas treats voter registration like a criminal offense and makes it as difficult as possible to do. Tunde grew up in Lagos and studied petroleum engineering at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. He got a job in the oil fields of Oklahoma but was laid off when the industry went bust. He became a citizen last year, so 2016 marks the first presidential election he can vote in. After moving to San Antonio three months ago, he began working with MOVE San Antonio, a progressive nonprofit that registers young voters. “I come from a background where poverty was the order of the day,” Tunde says. “The first step to empowering people to have a say in their community is to register them to vote. If you don’t vote, you don’t have a say.” Before he could register anyone, however, Tunde had to navigate Texas’s draconian voter-registration laws, beginning with this course. The state has no online registration, and anyone who registers voters must be deputized by the county at a training session that typically occurs once a month, sometimes less. The volunteer deputy registrars (VDRs), as they’re known, must be deputized on a county-by-county basis, and they can only be deputized in counties adjacent to their own, which makes statewide drives practically impossible in a massive state like Texas, with its 254 counties.

Wisconsin: Democratic lawmakers request federal investigation of voter ID implementation | The Cap Times

Democratic lawmakers in Wisconsin are asking the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate reports that Division of Motor Vehicles employees gave inaccurate information to would-be voters seeking identification cards. “With less than 35 days until the election, we are requesting that your department immediately investigate these claims and, if merited, take appropriate legal action to ensure Wisconsin electors hoping to vote in the upcoming election are able to do so,” reads a letter to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch signed by 28 Assembly Democrats. The letter comes one day before the due date for a DMV investigation into the reports, first detailed last week in The Nation and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “Because eligible voters may have been turned away, we feel that federal oversight may be warranted,” the Democratic lawmakers wrote.

Canada: U.S. stays with with controversial e-voting, but Canada still shy | IT World Canada News

At the best of times U.S. elections are heated, and these aren’t necessarily the best of times. We’ve already seen the discovery of data breaches at the Democratic party and candidate Hillary Clinton. This week one technology writer warned that the November U.S. presidential election “can be rigged and sabotaged, and we might never even know it happened.” He was referring to the use in 10 U.S. states of touch screen voting machines that don’t have paper backups, which some experts worry are vulnerable to malware.Even if cyber attackers do nothing more than play with electronic voter registration systems it could cause backups at voting stations, causing voters to leave and potentially affecting outcomes. For these and other reasons Canadian electoral officials are still cautious about adopting electronic voting here. Some municipalities are using machine-readable paper voting systems, but touch screen or online voting in federal and provincial elections is still taboo. “I have no plans to introduce online voting for 2019,” Marc Mayrand, Canada’s chief electoral officer told Parliament’s special committee on electoral reform in July. “I think there’s still a lot of research to be done, and there are many considerations. That’s what I would like to see the committee doing in its work, addressing some of the key considerations and giving us some direction on where we should go and how should we proceed to explore and test online voting at some point.

Georgia (Sakartvelo): Election in Ex-Soviet Georgia Seen as Test of Stability After Violence | VoA News

A close parliamentary election in Georgia on Saturday is being seen as a test of stability in the ex-Soviet state after a car bombing and a shooting marred the runup to the vote. Crisscrossed by strategically important oil and gas pipelines and traditionally buffeted between Russia and the West, a fifth of Georgian territory remains under the control of pro-Russian separatists and the economy is emerging from a deep slowdown, which has crimped living standards. Opinion polls suggest the ruling Georgian Dream party, which is funded and controlled by the country’s richest man, is likely to win. But they also show strong support for the opposition United National Movement (UNM) and suggest many voters are undecided. “No one can be sure who the winner will be, but the vote is expected to be free and fair,” said Thomas de Waal, a Caucasus expert at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Haiti: Hurricane damage forces Haiti to delay voting yet again | AFP

Haitian authorities have postponed presidential and legislative elections originally set for Sunday because of the havoc caused by Hurricane Matthew, election officials said Wednesday. The impoverished Caribbean nation’s last elections, in 2015, were canceled amid violence and massive fraud, leaving the country stranded in political limbo ever since. The president of Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council, Leopold Berlanger, said a new date for elections would be announced by next Wednesday at the latest, after talks between the various interested parties. The authorities must first assess the damage caused by Matthew, which struck Haiti on Tuesday as a Category Four hurricane with 230-kilometer (145-mile) an hour winds, he said.

Kenya: Controversial election commission quits | AFP

The election commission that oversaw Kenya’s flawed 2013 polls and was tarnished by a corruption scandal will receive a $2 million pay-off in return for agreeing to leave office early, local media reported Thursday. The nine commissioners will share the pot of cash, according to local newspaper reports. Statements issued by both the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and the government said they had “agreed on the terms for a dignified vacation from office for current IEBC commissioners”. The government said it had sought to “strike a balance between public interest, legal and constitutional demands, the contract of appointment to office of each Commissioner and the guidelines of the Salaries and Remuneration Commission,” but did not state publicly what the exit package was worth.

Lithuania: Lithuanians to vote amid scandals, economic concerns | Associated Press

Lithuania is just emerging from one of Europe’s worst recessions, has a shrinking population and one of the world’s highest suicide rates. Politicians, however, appear to be ignoring many of those issues as the Baltic nation prepares to vote Sunday in the first round of choosing a new Parliament. Political scandals and vows to raise living standards are dominating the election campaign. “This time it’s not about programs or ideas, but promises and scandals,” said analyst Lauras Bielinis from the Vilnius International Relations Institute. “People are concerned about rising prices, low wages and everyday living, so parties are competing who will promise more and who will dig up more dirt on each other.”

Malaysia: How to run elections: Rights group points EC to India, New Zealand | Malay Mail

The Election Commission (EC) could be remodelled after its counterparts in India and New Zealand for greater checks and balances in the way it runs elections, the Society of the Promotion of Human Rights Malaysia (Proham) suggests. Proham chairman Datuk Kuthubul Zaman highlighted the public’s perception that the EC lacked independence, noting among other things that the voting regulator is parked under the Prime Minister’s Department and have its members appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on the prime minister’s advice. “So I think we need to learn lessons from different democracies,” he said at a roundtable discussion last night. Kuthubul gave the example of New Zealand’s division of election-related responsibilities, listing various features such as its chief electoral officer is a staff under the minister of justice instead of the prime minister, while electoral enrolment centres tasked with handling voter registration and voter list maintenance.

Montenegro: An election tug-of-war between Russia and the West | Reuters

Alexander Khrgian quit Moscow for Montenegro in 2008 and immediately felt at home, setting up a law firm that helps the tiny country’s outsized Russian diaspora do business, profiting from close ties between the two countries. “We liked the climate, the people and conditions for doing business,” said the lawyer. “So we stayed.” But a parliamentary election due on October 16 could test those ties. The vote, its outcome very much in the balance, could be Montenegro’s last before joining the Western NATO alliance, an expansion dubbed “irresponsible” by Russia. Attracted by the mountainous country’s majestic coastline, some 15,000 Russians flooded into the country after its 2006 split from Serbia, bringing money and Russian influence to the former Yugoslav republic of just 650,000 people. Ushering Montenegro into NATO is a priority for the West, wary of Russian influence in a strategic region that is on the frontlines of the migration crisis facing Europe.

Morocco: Neither main party will really win as Moroccans vote | The Washington Post

On Friday, Morocco will hold its second parliamentary elections since the constitutional changes that followed the Arab Spring protests led by the Feb. 20 movement in 2011. The Party of Justice and Development (PJD), a moderate Islamist-oriented party which has led a coalition government since then, seeks to defend its lead against its chief rival, the Party of Authenticity and Modernity (PAM), founded by Fouad Ali El Himma, a close friend and adviser to King Mohammed VI. What’s at stake in this battle? The short answer: not much. There are good reasons to be skeptical that the outcome of the election will alter the political landscape in a meaningful way. Political science wisdom on democratic institutions sheds light on the limitations that confront all political parties in Morocco, whether they gain or lose seats in this week’s elections. Approximately 30 parties compete for the parliament’s 395 seats, 90 of which are reserved for women and candidates under 40. The number of parties complicates alliance formation: To create a coalition, the leading party must bring together parties with differing priorities and constituencies, which is no easy task. Competition weakens parties’ ability to present unified policies.

Palestine: Local polls delayed for up to four months | Al Jazeera

The Palestinian government has delayed municipal elections for up to four months with Fatah and Hamas so far unable to overcome divisions to organise their first competitive polls in a decade. The postponement came on Tuesday, a day after the Palestinian high court ruled that the elections, initially scheduled for October 8, should be held only in the West Bank and not in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. A new date for the vote was not set by the government based in the West Bank, the Palestinian territory run by President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party. The Palestinian Central Elections Commission and the United Nations special representative welcomed the postponement, saying they were hopeful that Gaza would now be included in the eventual vote. The Palestinians have not held an election in which both Hamas and Fatah took part since 2006. They have also not held a vote in both the West Bank and Gaza Strip at the same time since then.

National: If the election is hacked, we may never know | Computerworld

The upcoming U.S. presidential election can be rigged and sabotaged, and we might never even know it happened. This Election Day voters in 10 states, or parts of them, will use touch-screen voting machines with no paper backup of an individual’s vote; some will have rewritable flash memory. If malware is inserted into these machines that’s smart enough to rewrite itself, votes can be erased or assigned to another candidate with little possibility of figuring out the actual vote. In precincts where vote tallies raise suspicions, computer scientists will be called in the day after the election to conduct forensics. But even if a hack is suspected, or proven, it would likely be impossible to do anything about it. If the voting machine firmware doesn’t match what the vendor supplied, “it’s like you burned all the ballots,” said Daniel Lopresti, a professor and chair of the Computer Science and Engineering Department at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania. “We have no way to confirm that we can really trust the output from the machine,” he said.

National: 3 nightmare election hack scenarios | CSO Online

The question on the mind of many voting security experts is not whether hackers could disrupt a U.S. election. Instead, they wonder how likely an election hack might be and how it might happen. The good news is a hack that changes the outcome of a U.S. presidential election would be difficult, although not impossible. First of all, there are technology challenges — more than 20 voting technologies are used across the country, including a half dozen electronic voting machine models and several optical scanners, in addition to hand-counted paper ballots. But the major difficulty of hacking an election is less a technological challenge than an organizational one, with hackers needing to marshal and manage the resources needed to pull it off, election security experts say. And a handful of conditions would need to fall into place for an election hack to work. Many U.S. voting systems still have vulnerabilities, and many states use statistically unsound election auditing practices, said Joe Kiniry, a long-time election security researcher. “With enough money and resources, I don’t think [hacking the election] is actually a technical challenge,” said Kiniry, now CEO and chief scientist at Free and Fair, an election technology developer. “It’s a social, a political, and an infrastructural challenge because you’d have a medium-sized conspiracy to achieve such a goal. Technically, it’s not rocket science.”

National: The threat to our voting system that’s more likely than hacking | PBS

Earlier this year, the Democratic National Committee was hacked, and some of its private emails were released to the public. Last week, the FBI confirmed that hackers targeted voter registration systems in 20 states. But most voting systems are not connected to the internet, which means they’re less prone to hacking. In fact, a 2014 report by the Presidential Commission on Election Administration, says the biggest threat on Election Day is not hackers — it’s outdated equipment. This November, 42 states will use machines that are more than a decade old, according to the Brennan Center for Justice. Machines in 14 states, including Florida, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Texas and Virginia are in some cases more than 15 years old. States are increasingly reporting vulnerabilities, such as worn-out modems used to transmit election results, failing central processing units and unsupported memory cards, the National Institute of Standards and Technology reported.

National: Hacking an election is about influence and disruption, not voting machines | PCWorld

Every time there’s an election, the topic of hacking one comes to the surface. During a presidential election, that conversation gets louder. Yet, even the elections held every two years see some sort of vote hacking coverage. But can you really hack an election? Maybe, but that depends on your goals. The topic of election hacking is different this year, and that’s because someone is actually hacking political targets. Adding fuel to the fire, on Aug. 12, 2016, during an event in Pennsylvania, Donald Trump warned the crowd that if he loses the battleground state, it’s because the vote was rigged. “The only way we can lose, in my opinion—and I really mean this, Pennsylvania—is if cheating goes on,” Trump said. This was no random remark either, Pennsylvania voting has been called in to question before. Such was the case when Republican supporters claimed Mitt Romney lost the state in 2008 due to fraud. When it comes to hacking elections, most people imagine voting machines compromised in such a way that a vote for candidate ‘A’ actually counts as a vote for candidate ‘B’ – or the votes just disappear.

Editorials: Changing votes isn’t the only way hackers could undermine an election | Zoe Lofgren/Slate Magazine

When the House Committee on Science recently held a hearing on cyber vulnerabilities and our elections systems, the committee focused only on threats facing the actual systems of voting—tabulations, electronic machines, and the possibility of a “rigged election.” Experts who testified at the hearing agreed that a threat to widespread vote manipulation across many different precincts and jurisdictions is very small and unlikely. But dismissing the likelihood of cybertampering with the election tally misses an important point: Cyberattacks could shake public confidence in political institutions, sow dissent and distrust among the population, and tilt the electoral playing field. In an attack this spring, hackers—who I have been advised are from Russia —stole data from the Democratic National Committee and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. They also stole voting data in Arizona and Illinois. Most recently, FBI and Department of Homeland Security officials have confirmed attempted attacks on voter registration systems in more than 20 states. These attacks align with a particular pattern that Russian-sponsored hackers have followed previously in well-documented attempts to influence foreign democratic elections in Ukraine, Bulgaria, Romania, and Philippines. They don’t just release stolen sensitive material; they also create false and counterfeit material designed to impact the outcome of elections.

Editorials: Why Proof of Citizenship Won’t Improve Election Integrity | Michael Gilbert/JURIST

For years, states have been sounding the alarm about voter fraud and pushing laws to prevent it. One such law would require voters to prove their citizenship, with a birth certificate, passport, or the like, before casting a ballot. This month a federal court slapped down proof-of-citizenship laws, but not for good. The opinion leaves wiggle room, and state lawmakers are not giving up. They are, however, wasting their effort. Anti-fraud measures can make elections safer in some circumstances, but usually they either have no effect (other than creating red tape) or make matters worse. My research proves it. Let’s get up to speed. In 2004, Arizonans approved an initiative requiring voters to prove their citizenship before they could vote. In 2013, the Supreme Court held [PDF] that federal law—specifically, the National Voter Registration Act—preempted the initiative. That Act requires states to use a form, developed by the federal Election Assistance Commission, to register voters for federal elections. The form requires would-be voters to swear, under penalty of law, that they are US citizens. States can ask the EAC to add state-specific instructions to the federal form, including additional requirements on citizenship, but they cannot demand it. Other states—Alabama, Georgia, Kansas—adopted laws like Arizona’s, and they worked many channels to get them enforced. But their efforts failed. States courts, federal courts [PDF], and the EAC [PDF] put proof of citizenship on ice.

Voting Blogs: Does Increased Internet Usage Decrease Voter Turnout? | Democracy Chronicles

As the United States moves into the final month of the 2016 Presidential election, both candidates have been trying to gain advantage over the other by using various outreach methods such as using the internet to get the upper hand. However, in a recently released study on internet usage and voter turnout, the candidates may be doing a disservice to their campaign as the study has shown that an increase in internet usage has decreased the voter participation rate in the last couple of Presidential election cycles. The study done by Dr. Heblich of the University of Bristol’s Economics department, has shown that an increase in information on the internet and the increase in consumption has created a “crowding out effect” for voters. “To the extent that online consumption replaces the consumption of other media (newspaper, radio, or television), with a high information content, there may be no information gains for the average voter, and in the worst case, even a crowding out of information”, Dr. Heblich said in regarding his study.

Editorials: Top-two reform tilts California toward one-party rule | Larry N. Gerston/Los Angeles Times

Since California’s Proposition 14 passed in 2010, all partisan candidates — except those running for president — appear on the same primary ballot, regardless of party. Then the two leading contenders face off in the general election. Like so many other electoral reforms in the state, this top-two primary system isn’t shaking out quite as intended. Reformers promised more moderate candidates and more competitive races. Instead we’ve got something that looks like one-party rule. The race to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer is exhibit A. State Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris and U.S. Rep. Loretta Sanchez were the survivors of a free-for-all nominating contest with 34 candidates, including Democrats, Republicans and a litany of minor party and independent candidates. But in deep blue California, where Democrats outnumber Republicans by better than a 3 to 2 margin, it should be no surprise that Democrats Harris and Sanchez prevailed.

Georgia: Technology error rejected some Georgia voter registration applications | Atlanta Journal Constitution

Any Georgian who tried to register to vote online using his or her driver’s license number between Friday evening and midday Monday is being encouraged to re-register, after state officials found a problem over that weekend that likely rejected many of the applications. The problem originated in the state Department of Driver Services, during an unsuccessful update at 6:30 p.m. Friday to the agency’s online security certificate. The failure caused an error that blocked instant verification of electronic voter registration applications for people using their driver’s license number to confirm their identity. Election officials with the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office discovered the problem Monday morning, and the system was back online by 12:30 p.m. that afternoon, officials said. Officials could not say how many people were affected by the outage. However, officials with the Secretary of State’s Office said they saw a spike that same weekend in requests for printed paper registration applications.

Indiana: Why Did Indiana State Police Raid A Voter Registration Group’s Office? | TPM

In Indiana, an investigation into alleged voter registration fraud intensified rapidly Tuesday when state police reportedly raided the Indianapolis office of a voter registration group and confiscated computers, personal cell phones and paperwork, according to a report from the Intercept. The Intercept reported that workers at the site told them that state police stopped one person from recording the incident and that the group’s lawyer said he was unable to enter the building. State police are investigating the Indiana Voter Registration Project’s efforts in nine counties after claims that the group fraudulently registered voters, according to the Indianapolis Star. Indiana’s Secretary of State Connie Lawson, who was a key sponsor of Indiana’s 2005 voter ID law that went all the way to the Supreme Court where it was upheld– announced the investigation in September.

Kansas: Kris Kobach keeps fighting, sometimes uphill, for stringent immigration laws | Lawrence Journal World

If there was any question whether the immigration debate is still raging in the heartland, it was probably settled the moment that Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach demanded the birth certificate of a 90-year-old World War II pilot. On a stiflingly humid September day in central Kansas, Kobach pushed through the courtroom door, head bowed, a storm cloud on his face. His ever-present red tie, front-swept hair and 2-inch sideburns framed an even jawline. He is a secretary of state here, a man who has authored some of the most stringent immigration legislation in the country — often traveling the nation to argue his own cases — and has cleared a viable path to the governor’s mansion. Behind a lectern facing the judge, an ACLU attorney finished her initial fusillade of oral arguments with a comment directed at Kobach. “He has to use such convoluted reasoning,” said Sophia Lin Larkin, representing a class of voters who the ACLU argued was being treated as second-class citizens in Kobach’s voting system. “This is simply another variation of his mistaken understanding in this case.” Kobach’s understanding of the voting-rights case is an extension of his philosophy on rights accorded to any American: They are conditional offers that only apply to those who can prove their citizenship.

Michigan: Ballot selfie ban stirs court challenge | The Detroit News

Social media and the sanctity of the voting place are colliding in Michigan, where a Portage man is asserting a constitutional right to take “ballot selfies” by challenging the state’s long-standing ban on voting station and polling place photography. Joel Crookston, 32, sued the state in Grand Rapids federal court last month, arguing his First Amendment right to free speech was unconstitutionally limited by state law and policies designed to discourage voter intimidation. “State law and orders from the Secretary of State threaten Crookston and all Michigan voters with forfeiting their votes, fines and even imprisonment for this simple, effective act of political speech,” attorney Stephen Klein wrote in a request for a preliminary injunction filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan.

Virginia: Ballot selfies are legal in Virginia, attorney general says | Richmond Times-Dispatch

Ballot selfies are not a crime, according to Virginia Attorney General Mark. R. Herring. In a formal opinion last month, Herring said it’s not against the law for Virginia voters to use a cellphone inside a polling place to take photos or video of their own ballot for publication on Instagram, Snapchat or Facebook, as long as it doesn’t interfere with other voters or disrupt the election. Some states ban photography in polling places. Where it’s not outright illegal, many election organizers consider the use of cellphones to be taboo, given the private nature of voting and the need for an orderly process. But as cellphones and social media become more ubiquitous, bans on ballot photos have started to loosen. Last week, a federal appeals court ruled that a New Hampshire law prohibiting voters from posting photos of completed ballots online infringed on free speech.

Wisconsin: Federal judge to consider request to suspend Wisconsin’s voter ID law next week | The Cap Times

A federal judge will consider next week a request to temporarily block Wisconsin’s voter ID law following reports that the state may have violated a previous court order related to the administration of free identification cards. U.S. District Judge James Peterson has scheduled a hearing for Oct. 12 to consider a motion filed late Tuesday by the liberal group One Wisconsin Institute. Peterson on Friday ordered an investigation into media reports that Division of Motor Vehicles employees had given inaccurate information to people seeking state-issued free IDs for the November election, potentially violating an order from the judge’s July ruling in a broad challenge to voting laws implemented over the last five years. The findings of the DMV investigation are due to the judge by Friday. Peterson said both sides may offer evidence at the Oct. 12 hearing to argue whether the state has complied with his initial order.

Wisconsin: Experts Say Judge ‘Unlikely’ To Change Voter ID Law This Close To Election | Wisconsin Public Radio

A federal judge has scheduled a hearing for next week to consider a motion by voter ID opponents to block the law ahead of the Nov. 8 election. Western District Court Judge James Peterson will also use the hearing to discuss a state investigation into recordings that allegedly show eligible voters being turned away from getting IDs. “The parties should be prepared to discuss whether any of the relief requested by plaintiffs is necessary or appropriate,” Peterson wrote. The audio recordings were made public by a group called VoteRiders. In a sworn declaration to the court, the group’s Molly McGrath said they feature Wisconsin Division of Motor Vehicle employees giving people incorrect advice about what to do if they lack IDs. For example, one of the recordings features a man being denied an ID and directed away from a petition process for people who can’t easily get identification.