Re: Re: Emergency Measures To Protect The 2004 Vote Count (EM2004)

From: Ellen Theisen <ellent_at_olympus_dot_net>
Date: Sat Sep 11 2004 - 01:42:10 CDT

From: "David Mertz" <>
> Now, indeed, MAYBE you can find constitutional authority for such a
> law... but it's far from a slam-dunk.

While the Constitution gives state legislatures the power to determine how
electoral votes will be assigned, a July 14, 2004 report by the
Congressional Research Service ("Executive Branch Power to Postpone
Elections") has pointed out that Supreme Court case law gives Congress the
power to protect the integrity of the Presidential election "whether
threatened by force or by corruption." In addition the "equal protection"
clause in Amendment 14 (along with the non-discrimination in 19, 24, and 26)
has been interpreted to mean that Congress can prevent discrimination in
access to voting. Certainly the difference between an electronic,
unauditable ballot and a physical, auditable ballot could be construed as
discrimination in access to voting.

> Let's say ONLY 20 states decide to challenge this law under a
> states-rights motive. I doubt it would be that few, but hope spring
> eternal. How do you see 20 Federal court cases (almost certainly with
> precise arguments, and hundreds of amicae briefs) getting wound up by
> November, and the new procedures paid for an implemented?

Has any state challenged HAVA in court?

Ellen Theisen

Avoid a national crisis in November!
Hand counted paper ballots for federal offices.

----- Original Message -----
From: "David Mertz" <>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, September 10, 2004 5:22 PM
Subject: Re: [voting-project] Re: Emergency Measures To Protect The 2004
Vote Count (EM2004)

> > The Constitution allows Congress to regulate state election laws.
> > Article 4, Section 1 definitely gives the federal government this
> > right. This is why Congress was able to pass the Motor Voter law and
> > the 1964 Voter Rights section of the Civil Rights act.
> Not really. The 1964 Civil Rights Act gets its authority more from the
> 14th Amendment. Article 4, Section 1 reads:
> -----
> The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and
> Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature
> thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such
> Regulations, except as to the Places of chusing Senators.
> -----
> This probably lets congress require hand recounts of races for Senator
> and Representative, but no similar authority is granted to require hand
> recount for President and Vice President.
> Ellen Theisen's idea was to add a requirement for ALL Federal contests,
> which would included Prez.
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= quotations under fair use, are released to the Public Domain
Received on Thu Sep 30 23:17:05 2004

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