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Election Litigation

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August 27, 2012
Robert Timothy Reagan, Margaret S. Williams, Marie Leary, Catherine R. Borden, Jessica L. Snowden, Patricia D. Breen, Jason A. Cantone

ABC, Inc. v. Heller (Philip M. Pro, D. Nev. 2:06-cv-1268)
Four weeks before the 2006 general election, news media sought federal court enforcement of their constitutional right to conduct exit polls within 100 feet of polling places. The court granted the media the relief they sought.
Topics: Exit polls; news media; attorney fees.

One of many Case Studies in Emergency Election Litigation.

Downloadable file:
PDF icon Case Study 1 page
August 27, 2012
Robert Timothy Reagan, Margaret S. Williams, Marie Leary, Catherine R. Borden, Jessica L. Snowden, Patricia D. Breen, Jason A. Cantone

Chesnut v. Democratic Party of Nevada (James C. Mahan, D. Nev. 2:08-cv-46)
In 2008, voters challenged Nevada’s Democratic Party’s plans for nominating caucuses in which some voters would be able to participate in at-large caucuses at times other than the scheduled time for regional caucuses. The court determined that the party had not exceeded its authority in determining its nominating procedures.
Topics: Party procedures; intervention; recusal.

One of many Case Studies in Emergency Election Litigation.

Downloadable file:
PDF icon Case Study 2 pages
August 17, 2012
Robert Timothy Reagan, Margaret S. Williams, Marie Leary, Catherine R. Borden, Jessica L. Snowden, Patricia D. Breen, Jason A. Cantone

Ohio ex rel. Skaggs v. Brunner (Algenon L. Marbley, S.D. Ohio 2:08-cv-1077)
Ohio’s secretary of state removed a mandamus action from Ohio’s supreme court concerning validity requirements for provisional ballots. The case was assigned to a judge who was already presiding over related cases. The judge granted summary judgment to the state, but the court of appeals ordered the matter referred to the state court, which held the secretary of state’s validity requirements to be too lax. The court of appeals affirmed the district judge’s denial of attorney fees.

Downloadable file:
PDF icon Case Study 2 pages
August 14, 2012
Robert Timothy Reagan, Margaret S. Williams, Marie Leary, Catherine R. Borden, Jessica L. Snowden, Patricia D. Breen, Jason A. Cantone

ACLU v. Brunner (Kathleen M. O’Malley, N.D. Ohio 1:08-cv-145)
A January 2008 complaint challenged the selection by a county of new voting machines because the machines would not give voters notice of errors and opportunities to cure them. The district judge determined that by the time the complaint had been filed there was not time for a remedy that would not excessively disrupt the March presidential primary election.
Topics: Voting technology; laches.

Downloadable file:
PDF icon Case Study 2 pages
August 13, 2012
Robert Timothy Reagan, Margaret S. Williams, Marie Leary, Catherine R. Borden, Jessica L. Snowden, Patricia D. Breen, Jason A. Cantone

Citizens Alliance for Secure Elections v. Vu (Paul R. Matia, N.D. Ohio 1:04-cv-2147)
In a challenge to a county’s voter registration procedures, claiming that they were so strict as to disfranchise voters, the court determined, on the case’s third day, that provisional ballot procedures were sufficient to protect voters from disfranchisement.
Topics: Registration procedures; provisional ballots.

One of many Case Studies in Emergency Election Litigation.

Downloadable file:
PDF icon Case Study 1 page
August 13, 2012
Robert Timothy Reagan, Margaret S. Williams, Marie Leary, Catherine R. Borden, Jessica L. Snowden, Patricia D. Breen, Jason A. Cantone

Boustani v. Blackwell (Christopher A. Boyko, N.D. Ohio 1:06-cv-2065)

Downloadable file:
PDF icon Case Study 1 page
August 13, 2012
Robert Timothy Reagan, Margaret S. Williams, Marie Leary, Catherine R. Borden, Jessica L. Snowden, Patricia D. Breen, Jason A. Cantone

Brown v. Rokita (Richard L. Young, S.D. Ind. 1:08-cv-1484)
On the day before the 2008 general election, a voter filed a class action challenging the nullification of her voter registration because she had not used the latest version of the voter registration form. At a temporary restraining order hearing that day, the parties announced an agreement that would permit voters who submitted old registration forms to cast provisional ballots that would be counted if the registration applications included all necessary information.

Downloadable file:
PDF icon Case Study 1 page
January 1, 2012
Federal Judicial Center

A collection of case studies on emergency election litigation in federal courts. Because of the time constraints in emergency cases, the case records are often not easily available from other sources. During the 2012 election season, the Center will periodically add case studies as research on the cases is completed. The case studies were prepared by Robert Timothy Reagan, Margaret S. Williams, Marie Leary, Catherine R. Borden, Jessica Snowden, Patricia Breen, and Jason Cantone.

March 14, 2002
Bruce M. Clarke, Robert Timothy Reagan

This monograph consists of an overview of the law of redistricting, a summary of statistical techniques frequently used in redistricting litigation, and a discussion of some of the major case management challenges presented by such cases. The legal overview focuses on Voting Rights Act, Equal Protection Clause, and one person-one vote cases. The Center prepared this monograph as a resource for judges assigned cases challenging legislative redistricting plans developed in response to the 2000 census.

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