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Brennan Center Sues NY Over Seasoning in Poisonous Brew [View All]

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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-12-10 09:01 PM
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Brennan Center Sues NY Over Seasoning in Poisonous Brew
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Brennan Center Sues NY Over Seasoning in Poisonous Brew

Lawsuit Dishonors Justice Brennans Name

The Brennan Center For Justice has filed suit against the NY State and NYC Boards of Elections to prevent election officials from configuring newly purchased optical scan voting machines in a manner that would disfranchise large numbers of voters. The suit, filed on behalf of NAACP, the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, the Working Families Party and other plaintiffs, seeks to compel election officials to use procedures to prevent votes from being disqualified when a voter selects too many candidates in a particular race, known as overvoting.

Of course it is important to require procedures to prevent overvoting, but The Election Transparency Coalition (ETC) has repeatedly insisted that all protective procedures New York has enjoyed for centuries be maintained, including the opportunity for meaningful public oversight of our elections. The Brennan Centers lawsuit, by focusing on a single protection, fails to address the much more significant problem: the States insistence that counties deploy concealed fraud-enabling vote-counting technology in the first place!


Nassau County has filed a lawsuit in State Supreme Court similar to ETCs upcoming suit and a federal judge has ruled that federal law does not require replacement of lever voting machines. Yet the Brennan Centers case continues to promote the widely held misconception that the federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA) mandates replacement of NYs trusted lever machines. The State of NY had also made this erroneous claim and argued that Nassaus case must be tried in Federal Court. But last month, Federal Court Judge Joseph Bianco rejected the States arguments and remanded Nassau Countys suit back to State Court. As Nassau had argued, New York has been in compliance with HAVA since 2008, when the State augmented the lever voting system with ballot marking devices at every polling place to increase accessibility for voters with special needs.

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