Alabama: “Absentee voting lawsuit against state dismissed by judge”

A state judge on Wednesday threw out a lawsuit by disability advocates challenging provisions of Alabama’s absentee ballot laws, saying his court lacked jurisdiction and the plaintiffs lacked standing to sue.

The lawsuit, initially filed in May in Montgomery County Civil Court by the League of Women Voters and several elderly or sick Alabamians, contended that provisions requiring absentee voters to have photo IDs before getting their ballots and another requiring a notary public or two witnesses attest that the voter filled out the ballot violate Alabama’s constitution amid the COVID-19 pandemic….

But Montgomery County Civil Court Judge J.R. Gaines dismissed the lawsuit for several reasons.

“For the reasons laid out in the defendants’ motions to dismiss, the court finds that it lacks jurisdiction over Plaintiffs’ complaint because Plaintiffs present a nonjusticiable political question, plaintiffs lack standing to sue defendants, and the claims against defendants are barred by sovereign immunity,” Gaines wrote in his order. “Additionally, the court notes that even if it had found that jurisdiction exists, it would have found that plaintiffs have failed to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, for the reasons laid out in the defendants’ motions to dismiss.”

That’s really the entire analysis; one of the most cursory and unsatisfying opinions in this area that you will read.


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