Monthly Archives: September 2004

The Texas Re-Redistricting Case

As the Supreme Court’s docket entry shows, this case was set for discussion at the Justices’ conference on Monday. When orders were released on Tuesday, nothing about the Texas case. Does that mean that the Justices will summarily affirm the result?
Although I have indicated here that I think a summary affirmance is the most likely result in this case, silence this past Tuesday does not mean much. There will be more orders early next week. My guess is that even if a majority of Justices vote for a summary affirmance, there will be a dissent in the Texas case by at least some of the Vieth dissenters. It will take time for such a dissent to be written. On the other hand, if the case is to be set for oral argument, I would expect that to happen pretty soon.

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“Fahrenheit 9/11” Without President Bush?

With the October 5 release of Michael Moore’s film on DVD (see here for other election-related films and books being released), I happened to see a commerical touting the DVD. It showed Michael Moore and images from the film. What was missing? Any reference or picture of President Bush, something that would seem odd to an outsider given that he’s the subject of the film.
The reason is BCRA. Moore’s film is being advertised by its distributor, which is a corporation, and corporations cannot pay for an “electioneering communication” without getting an exemption from the FEC. An electioneering communication features a candidate for federal office, is broadcast on T.V., radio, cable or satellite, and is targeted at the relevant electorate.
Fortunately for Moore, most people already know the subject of his film.

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“Democracy in Decline: Can Internet Voting Save the Electoral Process?”

Bryan Mercurio (UNSW) has posted this article on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

    This article evaluates the ability of Internet voting to improve the electoral process by comparing it against traditional methods of voting currently used. In order to clearly understand electoral issues, the article briefly describes the criteria needed in order to conduct a successful election. It then introduces and defines the different forms of Internet voting used in the context of this article before introducing and analyzing some major faults with the election system, including its discriminatory effect on minority and disabled voters.
    The article then evaluates the promise of Internet voting as a solution to these faults while also reviewing and substantially discrediting the perceived problems with implementing Internet voting. The article concludes by putting forward several proposals leading to the gradual introduction of Internet voting into the electoral landscape.

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Ohio Election Law Woes

There are a number of election stories now coming out of Ohio. A key battleground state, Ohio is—in my view–the most likely candidate for election day problems and therefore post-election challenges should the election be very close again.
Among the most important issues are (1) a dispute over whether Ohio will accept voter registration cards not printed on card stock [The A.P. story is here; Brian Leiter comments here] and (2) Democrats’ challenging the Secretary of State’s directive providing that provisional ballots cast in the “wrong” precinct won’t be counted [Dan Tokaji has the details here].
Ned Foley laments here that Ohio’s Secretary of State will not allow international observers for Ohio’s election.

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