Court Blocks 48 Hour Deadline for Return of Voter Registration Applications

On May 31 the Federal District Court in League of Women Voters, et al. v. Kurt S. Browning, et al.,  issued this preliminary injunction  against the provisions of  Fla.Stat.§97.0575  and a related administrative rule which required third party voter registration organizations to turn in registration applications within 48 hours and imposed detailed record keeping requirements.  In doing so the court reasoned;
Under the First and Fourteenth Amendments, an election-code provision of this kind must serve a legitimate purpose that is sufficient to warrant the burden it imposes on the right to vote. And under the National Voting Rights Act, an organization has a federal right to conduct a voter-registration drive, collect voter-registration applications,and mail in the applications to a state voter-registration office . . . But § 97.0575 and Rule 1S-2.042 severely restrict an organization’s ability to do this. The statute and rule impose a harsh and impractical 48-hour deadline for an organization to deliver applications to a voter registration office and effectively prohibit an organization from mailing applications in. And the statute and rule impose burdensome record-keeping and reporting requirements that serve little if any purpose, thus rendering them unconstitutional … 
 As of this date the state has not made a decision whether to appeal the injunction. Read about other pending state and federal litigation.
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Thomas D. Shults, Esq.

About Thomas D. Shults, Esq.

Tom Shults is a Florida Bar Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer and represents clients in election and sunshine law issues, complex business and commercial disputes and probate and trust suits. He was admitted to the Florida Bar in 1983 and has maintained an active trial practice in state and federal courts for over 35 years. Tom represents candidates, political parties and political action committees in election disputes and election law litigation. He successfully represented the Sarasota Alliance for Fair Elections in Sarasota Alliance for Fair Elections et al. v. Browning et al. , where the Florida Supreme Court ruled on the constitutionality of Sarasota County’s charter election law amendments. Tom has served on the Professional Ethics Committee of The Florida Bar and is the past Chairman of the Code and Rules of Evidence Committee of The Florida Bar. He is a recipient of the Distinguished Community Service Award of the Sarasota County Bar Association for his work with the Sarasota Mental Health Community Centers. In 2013 he was nominated for circuit court judge by the 12th Circuit Judicial Nominating Committee. Tom has served on the faculty of the Kessler-Eidson Program for Trial Techniques at Emory University School of Law and on the faculty of the National Institute for Trial Advocacy Program for Practicing Lawyers at Nova Southeastern University School of Law. Tom grew up in St. Petersburg, Florida and is a graduate of St. Petersburg High School (1973), Florida State University (B.S. 1977) and Washburn University School of Law (J.D. cum laude 1982). He is veteran of the United States Army.
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2 Responses to Court Blocks 48 Hour Deadline for Return of Voter Registration Applications

  1. Pingback: Florida Election Law Cases Remain Pending in Federal Courts | Florida Election Law Issues

  2. Pingback: Florida Adopts Emergency Rule for Third Party Voter Registration | Florida Election Law Issues

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