Civil rights groups are again challenging a federal judge’s ruling that an Alabama law requiring a government-issued photo ID for voting is not discriminatory. Legal counsel for the Alabama NAACP, Greater Birmingham Ministries and minority voters filed an appeal in the U.S. district court in northern Alabama on Wednesday. Since 2014, Alabama has required voters to show government-issued photo identification when they vote. The civil rights groups sued over the law in 2015, calling it discriminatory and an infringement on voting rights. They contended Alabama politicians knew when they enacted it that black and Latino voters “disproportionately lack the required photo ID.”
Articles about voting issues in Alabama.
Alabama lawmakers are pitching nearly two dozen pieces of legislation to retool the state’s elections process. The effort arrives ahead of a 2018 election that will see all of the state’s constitutional offices and legislative seats on the ballot. It also follows one of the major political upsets of modern era when Democrat Doug Jones defeated Republican Roy Moore in December’s special U.S. Senate contest. The most notable of the changes would eliminate future special U.S. Senate elections like the one that Jones won. Proponents say that this will save the state millions of dollars; opponents say it will subvert the democratic process. A floor fight could occur in the Alabama Senate next week.
Three transgender people sued an Alabama state agency on Tuesday, alleging its policy requiring proof of gender surgery to change the gender indicator on driver’s licenses was discriminatory. The lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union said the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency’s policy denied transgender people access to identification, and applicants were forced to release medical information to get driver’s licenses. “Anyone who is eligible for a license should be able to get one that they can use without sacrificing their privacy, safety, health, autonomy or dignity,” ACLU lawyer Gabriel Arkles said on a conference call with reporters.
A bill to eliminate special elections when there are vacancies in the U.S. Senate is in position for a vote in the Alabama House of Representatives next week. It comes in the wake of last year’s bruising battle to fill the seat Jeff Sessions left to become attorney general, won by Democrat Doug Jones. House Ways and Means General Fund Committee Chairman Steve Clouse, R-Ozark, said his bill to eliminate Senate special elections “has nothing to do with the personalities in last year’s election. It has everything to do with the cost to the General Fund.” Clouse said $11 million has been allocated to cover the cost of the three rounds of the special election to fill Sessions’ seat.
Advocacy groups are appealing a federal judge’s dismissal of a lawsuit challenging Alabama’ voter ID law. U.S. District Judge L. Scott Coogler on Wednesday ruled in favor of the state, saying the provision does not discriminate against minorities and is not an undue infringement on the right to vote since the state makes free IDs available for voting purposes. “In Alabama, the law has no discriminatory impact because it does not prevent anyone from voting, not when free IDs are issued in every county, or at home, under conditions that any registered voter can meet,” Coogler wrote.
Alabama: NAACP Legal Defense Fund ‘disappointed,’ appealing judge’s dismissal of Alabama voter ID lawsuit | AL.com
Officials with the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund on Friday filed a notice in court saying they are appealing Wednesday’s dismissal of the group’s lawsuit challenging Alabama’s voter ID laws. U.S. District Judge L. Scott Coogler ordered the lawsuit filed by Greater Birmingham Ministries, Alabama NAACP and individual plaintiffs against the State of Alabama be dismissed. “We are deeply disappointed by the judge’s ruling dismissing our case before trial,” said LDF President and Director-Counsel Sherrilyn Ifill. “Over the course of two years, we have developed a sound case demonstrating that Alabama’s voter ID law is racially discriminatory. We had hoped to present our full case at trial next month.” The group filed the notice of appeal on Friday.
Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall issued a statement today about the U.S. District Court’s decision to dismiss a federal lawsuit that challenged the constitutionality of Alabama’s voter ID law. Today, U.S. District Judge L. Scott Coogler ordered the lawsuit filed by Greater Birmingham Ministries, Alabama NAACP and individual plaintiffs against the State of Alabama be dismissed. The lawsuit specifically targeted House Bill 19 of 2011, which requires absentee and in-person voters to show a photo ID in order to cast a regular ballot.
Alabama: ES&S caught up in Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore’s allegations of ‘election fraud’ | Omaha World Herald
An Omaha company on Thursday was caught up in an Alabama Senate candidate’s unsuccessful attempt to stop the state from certifying the results of a special election. Late Wednesday, Republican Roy Moore filed a legal complaint alleging “election fraud” and asked the state to consider holding a new election. The complaint was rejected by a judge, however, and a state board Thursday officially declared Doug Jones the winner of the Dec. 12 election. The complaint, filed in state court, mentions Election Systems & Software, an Omaha-based company that provides equipment, software and services for election support.
The Roy Moore campaign filed a complaint Wednesday to have the election certification delayed “until a full investigation of voter fraud is conducted,” according to a statement from his campaign. The complaint includes affidavits from three “national election integrity experts” who claim election fraud occurred and a statement from Moore saying he successfully completed a polygraph test confirming the representations of misconduct made against him during the campaign are “completely false.” Moore has not conceded the election more than two weeks after he was defeated by Democrat Doug Jones. “This is not a Republican or Democrat issue as election integrity should matter to everyone,” Moore said. “We call on Secretary of State Merrill to delay certification until there is a thorough investigation of what three independent election experts agree took place: election fraud sufficient to overturn the outcome of the election.”
Republican Senate nominee Roy Moore released a poem on Christmas Eve, just days before the final totals in his losing effort against Democrat Doug Jones are to be certified. Moore’s self-written poem was posted to Facebook. It tells the story of a young girl whose father had died and the following Christmas miracle. “Have a Blessed and Merry Christmas!” the note accompanying the video said. Moore has not addressed his loss to Jones, the first Democrat in more than 20 years to be elected to the Senate from Alabama. The former Alabama Chief Justice hasn’t conceded the race, saying he wanted to wait until all military and provisional ballots were counted. That happened last week and did not change the results of the election.