If the Supreme Court — no friend of voting rights considering its recent record — decides to intervene this time, it could be bad news for minority voters. This potential case could even give the court a chance to narrow the scope of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) with respect to other restrictions like voter IDs. Despite the district court’s ruling, the case that the cuts violate the VRA is by no means open and shut.
Rick Hasen, a prominent election law scholar at the University of California, Irvine, who is often skeptical of voting restrictions, has called the cuts “not all that burdensome.” He added that “If 28 days is unconstitutional and a voting rights violation, what does this say about places like New York, which offer no early voting?”
Not everyone agrees. Dan Tokaji, an election law expert at Ohio State University, wrote on Hasen’s blog Thursday that the panel’s ruling upholding the injunction “faithfully applies existing law to the evidence admitted in the district court, maintaining the established period for same day registration and early voting.”
And State Sen. Nina Turner, a Democrat who is running against Husted this year, slammed the secretary of state’s decision to appeal to the Supreme Court.
“His decision to continue litigating just days before early voting is set to begin is irresponsible, outrageous, and a failure of his duty as Ohio’s chief elections officer,” Turner said in a statement.