We had a landslide victory in North Carolina

Finally, a judicial review of election integrity policies that actually account for measured impacts of the law – not hysterical speculation by left-leaning, self-serving partisans -- has been delivered in North Carolina. Years back, the Tar Heel State enacted an omnibus bill containing a voter ID requirement; an end to same-day voter registration; an end to out-of-precinct voting; an end to pre-registration for minors; and other provisions intent on returning the people’s confidence in local elections and combatting fraud. The DOJ/NAACP/Clinton ‘clown car’ of litigators and their professional victims filed suit to reverse the law in whole. After years, they lost on all fronts in court this week.

The 485-page ruling is a tour de force, examining actual facts versus hypothetical harms presented by the plaintiffs:

“The evidence shows that African Americans have fared better in terms of registration and turnout rates in 2014, after the new law was implemented, than in 2010, when the old provisions were in place … Since SL 2013-381 has been in place, African American turnout not only increased but did so at a greater rate than that of other groups (including whites) … Contrary to Plaintiffs’ predictions and somewhat surprisingly, the scholarly consensus of Plaintiffs’ own experts revealed that early voting depresses turnout. Moreover, same-day registration has not been shown to increase turnout in a statistically significant manner … The 2014 data merely confirm what the remaining data suggest: that minorities enjoy equal and constitutionally-compliant opportunity to participate in the electoral process.”

You get the drift. Opponents of election integrity reforms continue their perfect losing streak. Well done, North Carolina.

 

Schedule a TTV speaker today!

Just in time for the height of the 2016 Election, True the Vote has fanned out staff and speakers around the southern and southeastern United States -- with more to come. Do you have a meeting or conference coming up and would like to book a speaker on the subject of election integrity? We’ve streamlined the request process with a form now available on the website, here. We can’t wait to attend your next event!

 

Did you know? PEW Research highlighted a study that detailed the total amount it would cost to collect ALL voter files in the country. True the Vote’s national voter roll research databank costs $126,482 -- just for the raw data! If you haven’t yet, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to help underwrite our research efforts.

 

Convention anyone?

We've found that True the Vote supporters are some of the pro-liberty movement’s best- informed and most-dedicated people ... so ... we're betting you may have an interest in what's happening inside the ongoing state conventions. If you are planning to attend your state convention, would you let us know? Complete our new survey here. NOTE: if you have already emailed us your plans, it’s not necessary to answer the survey, too.

A coalition of 15 states is supporting Texas’ voter ID law in an amicus brief filed last week aimed at protecting states’ “discretionary legislative authority over elections.”

The amici States have an interest in ensuring that such authority is not undermined by judicial decisions that would grant voter ID opponents repeated opportunities to facially attack election laws that have already been deemed valid.

Led by Indiana attorney general Greg Zoeller, the coalition of states joining the amicus includes Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Utah, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Texas’ entire Republican congressional delegation also filed an amicus brief in support of the state’s voter ID law, known as SB 14, arguing that Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act has been misinterpreted.

The panel here adopted a radically different theory of Section 2.  The panel invalidated Texas’s race-neutral regulation of the time, place, and manner of voting through its voter ID law. It found that minorities are less likely to possess qualifying IDs because of underlying socioeconomic inequalities, which the panel predicted could lead to a disparity in minority voter participation… The panel thus concluded that Texas’s race-neutral election process violates Section 2… For several reasons, this novel theory contradicts both Section 2’s plain language and Supreme Court and Circuit precedent identifying the sort of discriminatory “results” proscribed by the statute.

An en banc hearing before the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals is scheduled for May 24.

A federal judge has upheld North Carolina’s voter ID law in a ruling posted Monday evening.

“U.S. District Judge Thomas Schroeder issued a 485-page ruling dismissing all claims in the challenge to the state’s sweeping 2013 election law overhaul.

“Schroeder, a George W. Bush appointee, also upheld portions of the 2013 law that reduced the number of days people could vote early, eliminated same-day registration and voting and prohibited people from casting a ballot outside their precinct.”

So what happens next with ‘One Person, One Vote’?

You may recall a few weeks back when the U.S. Supreme Court rejected two Texas voters’ effort that would have required that future redistricting plans be based on total voters registered or citizen voting-age population alone. While SCOTUS said no to this case, it did not otherwise slam the door on the proposed practices if performed on a legislative level. Essentially, the Justices left an open door for states to experiment going forward, within reason. TTV Founder Catherine Engelbrecht commended the original effort, arguing, “The plaintiffs were right to open this door … Too many are working to extend voting rights to noncitizens purely for political purposes. The Court has offered a roadmap for engaged voters to stand up for their voices — it’s on us to protect ourselves. Complacency is not an option.”

Fast-forward to this week. The left-leaning American Prospect is now placing its bets on which states will enter the breach first. They theorize that secure Republican state legislators will be squeamish to move, given that it likely would not yield a direct, personal advantage to their careers. Legislators in Texas, Arizona and Virginia fit this category. However, their article argues that Colorado and Nevada hold higher promise for such redistricting reforms.

Voters should not view this matter in terms of scoring one for their team. Rather, as a nation, we either need to decide to continue offering political subsidies to noncitizens or we ought put a stop to it now. A unanimous Supreme Court gave us the green light to make adjustments. What’s holding you back from telling your legislator to make a change now? That’s what we thought! Contact your representatives, here.

 

Did you miss the April 2016 National Conference Call?

If you were unable to join TTV for an explanation of the latest update on our IRS lawsuit and how to get involved in “Convention Season,” don’t sweat it. You can access a complete recording of the call here.

 

Did you know? PEW Research highlighted a study that detailed the total amount it would cost to collect ALL voter files in the country. True the Vote’s national voter roll research databank costs $126,482 -- just for the raw data! If you haven’t yet, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to help underwrite our research efforts.

 

Convention anyone?

We've found that True the Vote supporters are some of the pro-liberty movement’s best- informed and most-dedicated people ... so ... we're betting you may have an interest in what's happening inside the ongoing state conventions. If you are planning to attend your state convention, would you let us know? Complete our new survey here. NOTE: if you have already emailed us your plans, it’s not necessary to answer the survey, too.

Convention anyone?

We've found that True the Vote supporters are some of the best informed and most dedicated people in the pro-liberty movement ... so ... we're betting you may have an interest in what's happening inside the ongoing state conventions.

We sure do.

If you are planning to attend your state convention - would you let us know? Drop us a line at freeandfair@truethevote.org.

Not sure when your state party’s convention is happening? You can get that helpful info by clicking here for Republicans, or here for Democrats.

 

What we know from our IRS court hearing this week

Cautious optimism … that’s what TTV is feeling after this week’s hearing before the U.S. Court of Appeals - D.C. Circuit. You can listen to a recording of the oral arguments, here. We are happy to report the Court pulled no punches in asking the IRS’ attorneys why they should be trusted when the agency argues it has changed its ways since 2013. What happens now? We’re back to ‘playing the waiting game’ again. There is no hard and fast timeline for when a decision should be made. If TTV succeeds, we will have effectively reversed the lower court ruling to dismiss our case and be remanded back to the district court level for further litigation.

A key aspect as to whether our case has been successfully mooted by the IRS revolves around the issue of whether the answers and corresponding documents we provided to those infamously intrusive questions should be entered into the public record with the rest of our IRS file. The agency has argued that, even though such requests were “inappropriate,” we should have had the greater sense to reject their requests! Regarding the abundance of sensitive information the IRS collected, they call ‘finders keepers.’  TTV attorney Cleta Mitchell told The Washington Times this week that such information was “fruit of the poisonous tree.”

Immediately following oral arguments on Thursday, TTV’s appellate litigator, Dr. John C. Eastman, joined a national teleconference call hosted by The Federalist Society to debrief the hearing. An audio recording of that call is accessible on the group’s website.

We’ve learned in all dealings with the IRS that endurance pays dividends. So stay tuned, friends.  

 

Sign up for the Tuesday, April 19, 2016 TTV National Conference call!

It’s getting to be that time of year again … so many moving parts, so many balls in the air! Join us on Tuesday, April 19 @ 6 PM Central time for a rapid-fire discussion of True the Vote’s upcoming work related to the political convention season, and get the most current update on the IRS lawsuit. Click here to get registered.

 

Did you know? PEW Research highlighted a study that detailed the total amount it would cost to collect ALL voter files in the country. True the Vote’s national voter roll research databank costs $126,482 -- just for the raw data! If you haven’t yet, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to help underwrite our research efforts.

 

The Clinton camp is set to sue Arizona over voting locations

The courtroom voting wars have reached the Grand Canyon State. Hillary Clinton and the Democrat National Committee announced plans to sue Arizona this week, hoping to force county officials to submit November polling place locations for judicial review. Locals and party officials alike complained in the aftermath of the state’s March presidential preference primary that Phoenix-area voters reportedly stood in line for hours to cast a ballot. Looking back at 2008 figures, comparisons show that nearly 85% of voting locations were dropped. In its own defense, Maricopa County has protested, maintaining that it only underestimated turnout and sought to reduce costs. You can read more about this fast-developing case, here.

Judges: Henderson, Ginsburg, Sentelle
 
Arguing: John C. Eastman, Judith A. Hagley (DOJ), Eric R. Nitz
04/14/2016
 

Yet again, the dire “voter ID will suppress turnout” predictions of the anti-integrity left fail to materialize.

Wisconsin’s turnout rate in Tuesday’s presidential primary exceeded the state’s own bullish forecast, topped any Wisconsin Primary since 1972, and easily bested that of any state that has voted this year except for New Hampshire.  Nearly 2.1 million Wisconsinites voted, based on unofficial returns. 

Essentially, half the people that could vote did vote: roughly 47% of the state’s voting-age population and an estimated 49% of all eligible voting-age citizens.  “That’s unusual,” said turnout expert Michael McDonald, for a contest “this late in the presidential election calendar.”

In the wake of primary participation “7 points higher than what state election officials predicted,” Democrats quickly pivoted to complaining about “long lines” – lines caused primarily by the huge turnout, not voter ID, but also in many instances by same-day registration at the polls, particularly at “sites that had a high student population.”

Voters could have avoided the inconvenience of that extra wait in line on Election Day simply by registering in advance. Wisconsin primary voters also had ten days to vote early before Election Day, and free IDs have been available since 2012 to any voter who doesn’t already have an accepted photo ID. The University of Wisconsin-Madison even opened a second location for students to get free voter IDs printed in “less than two minutes.” Hardly a concerted effort to “suppress” turnout.

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker summed it up on Twitter: “Biggest turnout since 1972 Presidential primary shows that photo ID law works. Easy to vote, hard to cheat.”

Convention anyone?

We've found that True the Vote supporters are some of the best informed and most dedicated people in the pro-liberty movement ... so ... we're betting you may have an interest in what's happening inside the ongoing state conventions.

We sure do.

If you are planning to attend your state convention - would you let us know? Drop us a line at freeandfair@truethevote.org.

Not sure when your state party’s convention is happening? You can get that helpful info by clicking here for Republicans, or here for Democrats.

 

No joke: the ACLU sued Ohio for following TTV’s election integrity requests

This week, the ACLU brought a lawsuit against the State of Ohio to invalidate some of the good work TTV has done there in past years. If you've been with us since 2012 or before, you may recall that we brought a lawsuit against Ohio four years ago due to apparent voter roll maintenance failures. Three mid-sized counties had more than 100 percent voter registration, and 30 more counties disclosed just south of that amount. When a state puts up those kinds of numbers, it’s very likely that laws are not being followed to the letter. In early 2014, we struck a favorable legal settlement with the State of Ohio that was crafted so that essentially everyone walked away from the bargaining table a winner. One of the settlement conditions required that all 88 Buckeye counties would process their rolls uniformly and follow mail verification of records as prescribed by state and federal law. Under Secretary of State Jon Husted's care, the settlement worked. Bloated rolls receded back to normal levels. And another big plus – voter turnout rose, thanks to the registries no longer being artificially bogged down by numerous deadwood records.

That was all threatened this week. Now, the ACLU wants a judge to rip our settlement agreement apart and effectively block maintenance efforts going forward. Let's face it: it's Ohio, a battleground state. It’s a presidential election year. And the ACLU is largely comprised of people who will always bend the rules when (in their eyes) the ends justify the means.

Currently, True the Vote is huddling with its legal advisors to determine how to take the best first step. This situation is very fluid, and it's still early in the process. But be assured, we’ll keep you updated on next steps.

 

Did you know? PEW Research highlighted a study that detailed the total amount it would cost to collect ALL voter files in the country. True the Vote’s national voter roll research databank costs $126,482 -- just for the raw data! If you haven’t yet, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to help underwrite our research efforts.

 

TTV draws a new set of justices for upcoming IRS court date

Just as we were getting ready to head to court on April 14 in DC -- we learned that a whole new slate of justices was substituted to review our appeal. The change means that True the Vote attorney Dr. John Eastman will face Justices Karen LeCraft Henderson (G.H.W. Bush), Douglas H. Ginsburg (Reagan) and David B. Sentelle (Reagan). Since oral arguments are typically recorded here, we’ll link to the audio as soon as it’s available. We’re really getting close now…

 

SCOTUS denies two Texans’ request to force a redistricting reform

Recently, the Supreme Court refused to strike down the nationwide practice of including noncitizens and felons in the overall population allocation when drawing political boundaries. But, there’s a big, fat, silver lining. Although SCOTUS did not say that this method was wrong, it didn’t say that passing legislative reforms that would base redistricting allocations solely on the number of voting-aged residents who are citizens would be wrong, either. TTV Founder Catherine Engelbrecht summed the issue up this way with Breitbart Texas: “The plaintiffs were right to open this door. Too many are working to extend voting rights to noncitizens purely for political purposes. The Court has offered a roadmap for engaged voters to stand up for their voices — it’s on us to protect ourselves. Complacency is not an option.” Do you think your state should dump its old ways and only apportion districts based on resident citizens? Justice Clarence Thomas noted in his separate concurrence with Justice Ginsberg’s majority opinion that it’s up to you – and only you – to make that call. You’ve got a pen and a phone … don’t you think it’s time that your state legislators heard from you on this?

States may, but are not required to, draw legislative districts based on total population

Justice Ginsburg: “We hold, based on constitutional history, this Court’s decisions, and longstanding practice, that a State may draw its legislative districts based on total population…

“Because history, precedent, and practice suffice to reveal the infirmity of appellants’ claims, we need not and do not resolve whether, as Texas now argues, States may draw districts to equalize voter-eligible population rather than total population.”

Justice Thomas: “I agree with the majority that our precedents do not require a State to equalize the total number of voters in each district. States may opt to equalize total population… In my view, the majority has failed to provide a sound basis for the one-person, one-vote principle because no such basis exists. The Constitution does not prescribe any one basis for apportionment within States. It instead leaves States significant leeway in apportioning their own districts to equalize total population, to equalize eligible voters, or to promote any other principle consistent with a republican form of government. The majority should recognize the futility of choosing only one of these options. The Constitution leaves the choice to the people alone—not to this Court.”

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