Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann said he wants to include opponents of voter identification as state officials work to implement Initiative 27, the state constitutional amendment passed last week calling for Mississippians to present photo identification before voting. “My goals would not be to have people on the sidelines of the field waiting for someone to fumble the ball,” he said. “Help me implement it.”
Getting opponents’ help could aid the state when it seeks Justice Department approval. Under the federal 1965 Voting Rights Act, Mississippi must seek preclearance from federal officials before it makes changes to election procedures because of its history of discrimination against black voters. Read More
The American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Arizona filed a motion in a Washington, D.C. federal court today to intervene in the state of Arizona’s challenge to the federal Voting Rights Act (VRA). The ACLU argues that Section 5 of the Act, which since 1965 has protected racial and language minorities’ access to voting, must remain in place.
“Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act is critical for ensuring that states do not pass election laws that negatively affect minority voters,” said Katie O’Connor, staff attorney with the ACLU Voting Rights Project. “We are intervening in this case to make sure that this critical piece of legislation is upheld, so that everyone’s fundamental right to vote is protected.” Read More
Nebraska is poised to enter the national debate over whether voters should be required to show some kind of identification in order to vote, as Fremont Sen. Charlie Janssen plans to push legislation requiring Nebraskans to show ID before being allowed to vote.
Thirty-one states require voters to present some kind of identification in order to vote — and in 15 of those states it must be a photo ID. But Nebraska is one of 20 states with no voter ID law, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. As more states adopt stricter voter ID laws, it’s become a hot-button issue, because critics say poor people, minorities and elderly people are less likely to carry identification while proponents say requiring proof of ID reduces voter fraud. Read More
A planned mass deputation organized by members of Student Council on Monday night coincided with the announcement that the University of Wisconsin will be issuing voter IDs to students requiring them.
The deputation was organized by Associated Students of Madison first year representative Colin Higgins and involved 13 students. These now-official special registration deputies will be able to register other students and community members to vote. Read More
The Election Commission has banned city corporation polls candidates from using billboards and live animal and birds in their publicity campaigns. “A sub-clause is being included into the electoral code of conduct to this end,” senior assistant secretary of the Election Commission Secretariat, Mohammad Forhad Hossain told bdnews24.com.
EC secretary Mohammad Sadique requested the law ministry to issue a circular on the matter in a letter sent on Monday. Out of the 68 symbols set to be allocated to mayor and councillor posts contenders under the local government election guideline, 12 are pictures of animals and birds – tiger, duck, butterfly, fish, crocodile, rabbit, parrot, deer, stork, cow, chicken and elephant. Read More
B.C. could soon be testing Internet voting after a formal request to try the idea received a verbal endorsement from the provincial government Monday. Elections B.C. wants permission to run pilot projects on online voting and other new technologies, chief electoral officer Keith Archer said in a report tabled in the legislature.
The independent elections agency wants the freedom to try new technologies and look at security issues, Archer said. “We want to have the mandate to at least have the exploration of this topic,” he said. Read More
Clashes erupted in Cairo for a third day after fighting between security forces and demonstrators protesting military rule left at least 22 people dead, a week before Egypt’s first parliamentary elections since the ouster of Hosni Mubarak.
Protesters were driven back by tear gas in Tahrir Square, the center of the uprising that toppled Mubarak in February, some waving Egyptian flags and others hurling stones at riot police, in scenes televised from the site. Besides those killed, hundreds were injured in the fighting that started on Nov. 19, Health Ministry spokesman Mohammed el-Sherbeeny said today by telephone. Read More
Guam – The Guam Election Commission may be headed to court as a non-profit public interest law firm is filing suit, alleging racial discrimination due to the upcoming vote to determine Guam’s future political status. While a series of meetings and workshops on the process of decolonization were a positive step forward in Guam’s quest for self-determination, a civil suit filed by an island resident who isn’t eligible to vote could bring the process to a standstill.
The Center for Individual Rights – a non-profit public interest law firm based in our nation’s capitol, is taking the GEC and its commissioners to court. On behalf of Guam resident Arnold Davis, the CIR alleges racial discrimination after he was not allowed to register for the plebiscite because he didn’t meet the definition of a native inhabitant of Guam. Read More
An official of the Commission on Elections on Thursday called on the House and Senate to convene the joint congressional oversight committee (JCOC) on poll automation to help the Comelec find the best voting technology for the 2013 midterm polls. Commissioner Augusto Lagman said the committee’s input was needed by the Comelec Advisory Council (CAC) which is mandated by law to evaluate and recommend the appropriate election automation technology to the poll agency.
“I think the committee should convene. It has not met since the 2010 elections. There should have been an assessment of those elections. This is important because we want to learn what lessons we can from the 2010 elections,” Lagman told reporters. Read More