A federal judge has extended Florida’s voter registration deadline to Oct. 18, agreeing with voting rights advocates and the state Democratic Party that damage from Hurricane Matthew threatened to deprive some residents of their right to cast a ballot.
The decision on Wednesday had major political implications in a swing state where, the party’s lawyers said, Democrats make up a disproportionate share of those who register in the final week.
Florida and North Carolina, which also has a tight presidential race, were two of the five states battered last week as Hurricane Matthew moved up the coast, lashing northeastern Florida and causing severe flooding in North Carolina.
North Carolina officials said on Tuesday that they would address any problems. “We are working with each county with damage or anticipated damage to ensure they have polling places available for early voting and Election Day,” the executive director of the State Board of Elections, Kim Westbrook Strach, said.
You can find the trial court’s 3-pager granting the preliminary injunction, lacking in any real legal analysis, here.