ACRU

An Irresponsible Dissent

Election - Man placing vote in ballot box

This column by ACRU Policy Board member Hans von Spakovsky and Roger Clegg was published September 14, 2016 by The National Review.

Unhappy with the fact that the majority reversed, though only in part, a district court decision striking down two Ohio statutes —- that “(1) required county boards of elections to reject the ballots of absentee voters and provisional voters whose identification envelopes or affirmation forms, respectively, contain an address or birthdate that does not perfectly match voting records; (2) reduced the number of post-election days for absentee voters to cure identification-envelope errors, and provisional voters to present valid identification, from ten to seven; and (3) limited the ways in which poll workers can assist in-person voters” —- a federal appellate judge has written a dissent that includes 11 pages worth of photographs of civil-rights martyrs.

This is irresponsible behavior for a judge. To compare relatively minor, routine administrative changes such as these to the horrific murders and other terrible events that occurred during the Jim Crow era is wholly unjustified. To complain that the majority is trying to “reverse the progress of history” in taking one side or the other in a dispute over a seven-day vs. a ten-day deadline for a voter to cure an absentee ballot problem is bizarre to say the least. We expect such histrionics from activists, community organizers, and (alas) even politicians, but we ought hold to a higher standard members of the federal judiciary.