Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Breaking News: Judge Blocks Voter ID Law

Trial set for April, the Journal Sentinel reports.

A Dane County judge has granted a temporary injunction against Wisconsin's new voter identification law.

Circuit Judge David Flanagan granted the injunction Tuesday, meaning the law would not apply for the April 3 presidential primary election.

The NAACP's Milwaukee branch and immigration rights group Voces de la Frontera filed the lawsuit last year. A trial on a permanent injunction is scheduled for April 16.

"It's a solid victory for voting rights and all voters in the state of Wisconsin," said Richard Saks, attorney for the NAACP, who said the group was planning a news conference later Tuesday.
The Journal Sentinel added this to a later version of the story:
Flanagan's 11-page order covered the history of Wisconsin Supreme Court rulings upholding votes even when they may have run afoul of technical procedural requirements imposed by the Legislature, and distinguished Wisconsin's voter ID law from Indiana's voter ID law that was recently upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court...

He also relied on the testimony and reports of the plaintiffs' expert, professor Kenneth Mayer, whose work concluded there were more than 220,000 constitutionally qualified voters in Wisconsin who don't have the type of ID required under Act 23, as well as affidavits from 40 residents describing the costs and difficulties they encountered while trying to obtain photo ID to allow them to vote.

Flanagan found the impact of the law hit disproportionately hard on the elderly, indigent and minorities.

"The scope of the impairment has been shown to be serious, extremely broad and largely needless," Flanagan wrote. "There is no doubt that the plaintiffs have shown a very substantial likelihood of success on the merits."
There are multiple suits against the law: This separate case is pending.

[Updates: Flanagan is a Vietnam Vet who was a 1999 Tommy Thompson appointee - - see page 9 of this court newsletter.]

1 comment:

jimspice said...

Flanagan's a Thompson appointee -- Sept. 2000.