Indianapolis attorney Robbin Stewart was raised to value the right to vote.
In his home state of Delaware, Stewart watched his mother work as a citizen lobbyist to protect the environment, and he got his first taste of political activism when as a 10-year-old he joined the campaign of a man running for state representative. He earned his J.D. degree in 1993 at the University of Missouri School of Law and then completed an LLM on state constitutions and voting rights at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.
However, since 2005, when Indiana started requiring voters to show their picture before casting a ballot, Stewart has had trouble. He wants to vote, but he does not want to show his photo ID.
Stewart filed federal lawsuits in 2008 and 2010 and lately has started recording videos of what happens when he declines to show his driver’s license to poll workers. To date, his efforts have been in vain. Federal courts have dismissed his previous complaints, and his votes have largely gone uncounted.
Wearing a suit coat with blue jeans and what appear to be Chuck Taylor sneakers, Stewart said his skills as an attorney are limited, especially for the work some may consider to be tilting at windmills, but he has no plans to quit. He has another lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Robbin Stewart v. Marion County Election Board, et al., 1:18-cv-01487, and is attempting, again, to cast a valid vote without an ID.
“I’m a little bit crazy,” Stewart said, “and I’m a little bit this well-educated lawyer with a really deep traditional sense of what my rights are under the state Constitution.”