Thank you to the several hundred people who have contributed to the Coalition for Free & Open Elections (COFOE) over the years. COFOE is a loose coalition of most of the nation’s nationally-organized minor parties, and some allied organizations. Recently COFOE sent $1,000 to a volunteer lobbyist for better ballot access in Alabama, and $1,000 to a volunteer in Georgia. They will use the money to help pay their expenses as they spend time working to get better ballot access bills introduced in those states.
On December 6, the Florida Secretary of State filed a brief in Hand v Scott, 18-11388, in the Eleventh Circuit. This is the case on whether Florida’s procedures for restoring voting rights for ex-felons are arbitrary and therefore violate due process. The voters of Florida passed an initiative last month to restore voting rights for most ex-felons. The Eleventh Circuit had asked each side if the case is therefore moot, and this latest brief was filed per that request.
The Florida government brief admits that two of the plaintiff voters have not yet paid all court costs and fees that they are required to have paid if they want their voting rights restored. Therefore, unless that changes, they still can’t register to vote. Therefore, the case, as to them, appears not to be moot.
On November 28, five Ohio Republican State House members, including the Speaker, introduced HJR 19. It would amend the state constitution to provide that initiatives to amend the state constitution can’t pass unless they receive 60% of the vote. Also the time for collecting the signatures (10% of the last gubernatorial vote) would be cut to 180 days.
This bill is being considered in the 2017-2018 session of the legislature, not the legislature that takes office early next year.
David Krupa is a candidate for Alderman, 13th ward, in the February 2019 Chicago non-partisan election. He needed 473 signatures to get on the ballot, and he submitted 1,703 signatures. But then individuals who do not want him on the ballot submitted 2,700 affidavits of people who claim they had signed for Krupa and they now wish to revoke their signatures. See this Chicago Tribune story. Only 187 people who signed a revocation had actually signed Krupa’s petition, which means the other 2,513 individuals who said they had signed for Krupa were not telling the truth. Thanks to Rick Hasen for the link. Krupa is 19 years old.
John Myers, Los Angeles Times correspondent in Sacramento, has this story about the millions of California voters who cast a ballot last month, but who left their ballots blank in statewide races with only two Democrats, and no one else, on the ballot.
Arthur R. Jones, Republican nominee for U.S. House, Illinois 3rd district, polled 25.9% of the vote last month. The same district did not have any Republican nominee in 2016. In 2014, the same district cast 35.4% of its vote for the Republican nominee; in 2012, 31.5%.
Three write-in candidates filed for the November 2018 election, but together they received only 1.1% of the vote.
Jones got a lot of publicity for winning the Republican primary unopposed in March 2018, because he denies the existence of the Holocaust.