The Voting News Weekly: The Voting News Weekly for August 10-16 2015

vra-reauthorization_260Jim Rutenberg considers the dramatic partisan divide on voting rights that has developed since Congress voted overwhelmingly to reauthorize the Voting Rights Act in 2006. John Sebes of the Open Source Election Technology Foundation takes issue with statements made by Smartmatic’s Antonio Mugica regarding his claim that their system is “un-hackable.” By the end of the third day of the 12-day special session on redistricting, at least eight Florida legislators were working on alternative redistricting plans that, in some cases, would significantly change an initial base map that lawmakers started debating on Monday. A federal judge struck down New Hampshire’s 2014 ballot selfie law on the grounds it limited free political speech. A new study shows that Texas’ strict voter identification requirements kept many would-be voters in a Hispanic-majority congressional district from going to the polls last November — including many who had proper IDs.The head of Virginia’s elections board postponed action on a plan that would let people registering to vote skip questions about their citizenship and criminal history, saying it needs to be reworked. International observers and Haitian human rights groups on Tuesday sharply criticized the country’s violence-marred legislative elections as poorly policed and organized and with less than a year left before the 2016 elections, the Philippine Commission on Elections (Comelec) appears poised to turn to Smartmatic for most voting machine deals.

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