Monday, October 15, 2012

15 AGs join Ohio to fight federal court interference in state election laws

Press Release from the Jon Husted, Ohio Secretary of State:


Columbus - Attorneys general from 15 different states today joined Secretary of State Jon Husted (R-Ohio) in urging the U.S. Supreme Court to step in and preserve the authority of the states to run state elections.

The attorneys general filed a joint amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court this evening in support of Secretary Husted's recent appeal of a Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals' decision in Obama v. Husted. States signing on include Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Michigan, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin.

"If allowed to stand, the precedent set by this decision in the state of Ohio will have far reaching consequences for all 50, whether they are 'red,' 'blue,' or 'swing' states," Secretary Husted said. "Each of these 15 states has different voting rules and elections systems, but the one principle we all stand on is that state legislatures and not the federal courts should run elections."

In addition to the attorneys general, a group of military advocacy organizations joined Ohio in the appeal this evening. They continue to argue that when states adopt special accommodations to help military voters participate in elections, it does not constitute an equal protection violation as the Obama plaintiffs have argued.

Military intervenors include the National Guard Association of the United States, Association of the U.S. Army, Association of the U.S. Navy, the Marine Corps League, the Military Officers Association of America, the Reserve Officers Association, the National Association for Uniformed Services, the Non Commissioned Officers Association of the USA, the Army Reserve Association, the Fleet Reserve Association, the Special Forces Association, U.S. Army Ranger Association, Inc., AMVETS, the National Defense Committee and the Military Order of the World Wars.


An excerpt from the attorneys general brief: "The general trend for election processes has been an expansion of opportunities for voters to exercise their rights. Indeed, Ohio has been one of the leaders in this area. All states have an intense interest in the Sixth Circuit's injunction of Ohio election law and the court's rejection of state sovereignty in the area of election processes. And the questions presented raise issues of national jurisprudential significance: whether there is an unconstitutional burden placed on voters who have more than ample opportunities to vote, and whether the unique status of our men and women serving in the military justifies special voting opportunities. The states have a vital interest in these issues."

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