Monthly Archives: December 2006

Judge Issues Order Denying Jennings and Intervenors Permission to Examine Source Code in FL-13 Election Contest

I have posted the judge’s order here. A snippet: “Plaintiffs have presented no evidence to demonstrate that the parallel testing was flawed and/or the results not valid. …The testimony of Plaintiffs’ experts was nothing more than conjecture and not supported by credible evidence.”
UPDATE: AP reports: “While Democrats could block Buchanan from taking the seat, they decided that the people of the southwest Florida district should have representation while the contest is being decided, said a spokesman for incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. The challenge could take months to settle, [Rep.] Holt said.”

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Major Breaking Election Administration News from Canada: Canada’s Chief Election Officer Unexpectedly Resigns

The Globe and Mail offers Questions emerge as Kingsley quits Elections Canada post. For more coverage, see here. This is very troubling. Kingsley had another two years before mandatory retirement at age 65. I and others have looked to Kingley as an example of the kind of independent and fair election administrator who would be the model for U.S. jurisdictions. The possibility that he was being forced out for taking too tough a stand against the ruling administration is of great concern. This is a story I expect to follow as it unfolds.

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Ancheta on Language Accommodation and the VRA

Angelo Ancheta has posted this draft on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

    Since 1975, the language assistance provisions of the federal Voting Rights Act have provided important safeguards of voting rights to racial and ethnic minority citizens. Despite the renewal of key provisions of the Voting Rights Act in 2006 for an additional twenty-five years, Congress has not articulated a comprehensive theory of language rights in the voting arena, nor has it provided language assistance mechanisms that provide adequate assistance to all limited-English-proficient voters.
    This paper articulates a theory of language accommodation within federal antidiscrimination jurisprudence and suggests revisions to key sections of the Voting Rights Act to expand coverage of the law.

From my quick glance at this paper, this looks like an article well worth reading covering territory that has been undertheorized in voting rights jurisprudence.

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Much Ado About NASCAR?

Brad Smith blogged about this FEC ruling in which NASCAR driver Kirk Shelmerdine was admonished for using some unsold space on his race car for a Bush-Cheney 04 sticker. The story has caught on. Brad was on MSNBC talking about it, the Washington Post editorialized about it, and Bob Bauer commented on it. I have to agree with the Post that bringing the resources of the FEC to bear on this de minimis case seems rather “silly.”

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“With Promises of a Better-Run Congress, Democrats Take on Political Risks”

The NY Times offers this report. A snippet: “After chafing for years under what they saw as flagrant Republican abuse of Congressional power and procedures, the incoming majority has promised to restore House and Senate practices to those more closely resembling the textbook version of how a bill becomes law: daylight debate, serious amendments and minority party participation.”

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