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Tallahassee Democrat/Gannett: Alabama redistricting ruling 'opens the window to hope' for Florida challengers

“We’re very hopeful that what came out in Alabama will bode well for Florida,” said Kathay Feng, vice president of programs for Common Cause, which is among the plaintiffs suing Florida in federal court over the congressional map. Feng said justices clearly signaled that the “Voting Rights Act is not dead.” “Protections against racial gerrymandering are not dead and if the historical record and the facts show themselves to be worthy, the Supreme Court will find there is racial gerrymandering and will order” a remaking of the map, she added.

Voting & Elections 06.6.2023

Associated Press: Supreme Court tossed out heart of Voting Rights Act a decade ago, prompting wave of new voting rules

Voting rights groups say that does not mean voting is easy, and they have been responding to the restrictions with fresh strategies. In Georgia, for instance, Common Cause set up mobile printing stations across the state so voters could comply with new voter registration rules that require an ink signature on a printed form. “It’s only through the work of all these communities and groups on the ground that voters have access,” said Sylvia Albert, the group’s national director of voting and elections. “But doing this post-Shelby, courts are not recognizing the true damage those laws have had.”

The New Yorker: How a Fringe Legal Theory Became a Threat to Democracy

Flight attendants use euphemistic doublespeak because, understandably, they want to avoid terms like “hijacking” and "September 11th.” For similar reasons, Jones spoke in broad terms, without directly invoking Trump or January 6th. (There were also other reasons for this, such as Common Cause’s nonpartisan status.) Even so, the implications were clear. At one point, an organizer sitting in the audience stood, using a cane, and gave an impromptu speech, urging listeners to imagine a Supreme Court opinion that enabled legislatures to rig elections at will. “There was a time when I used to think things like that couldn’t happen,” he said. “But then we had January 6th, Roe—these things can happen. They’re happening.”

Voting & Elections 06.1.2023

Texas Tribune/VoteBeat: Harris County elections face state intervention under new laws

Katya Ehresman, voting rights program director with Common Cause Texas, said voters, county officials and election administrators should have been given the opportunity to testify about legislation set to directly impact them. Ehresman said that process was concerning and “against values of transparency and public input, which should be core parts of the legislative process.” “These bills do have a tangible effect on voter turnout, voter apathy, and on the ability for elections administrators to do their job free from threats and free from partisan pressures,” Ehresman said. “The discourse surrounding Texas election reform continues to be punitive and continues to be rooted in misinformation. And that will have a permanent damage on recruitment [of election workers] and election administration going forward.”

Voting & Elections 05.31.2023

Tallahassee Democrat (Op-Ed): Florida Legislature and Gov. DeSantis are trampling on our voting rights

If we want a democracy that works for everyone, we should be making it harder for money to influence politics, and easier for eligible Floridians to exercise their freedom to vote.  But that’s the opposite of what’s happening in Florida, with state lawmakers erecting a slew of unnecessary and confusing barriers for Floridians looking to participate in our democracy.

Voting & Elections 05.30.2023

States Newsroom/Wisconsin Examiner: GOP-led states plan new voter data systems to replace one they rejected. Good luck with that.

“We would have no problem with the state setting up something that followed federal law and somehow getting a bunch of other states to go along with it,” said Julia Vaughn, the executive director of Common Cause Indiana, which brought the lawsuit against the state. “But good luck doing that with one individual state with no real expertise in this, and no reputation as some entity that other states should trust their voter registration lists with.”

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