Update on New Hampshire Voting Rights Act Case

by Hans A. von Spakovsky

In an article in NRO on Tuesday, I outlined the trickery being practiced by the Justice Department in a bailout lawsuit filed by New Hampshire under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act in the D.C. federal district court. DOJ was preparing to consent to allowing New Hampshire to get out from under coverage of the statute despite the state’s long-term and blatant noncompliance with the law in preparation for oral arguments before the Supreme Court in Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder.

The Center for Individual Rights filed a motion to intervene on Wednesday on behalf of a resident of the state who objects to the bailout. The motion reminds the court that it cannot grant New Hampshire’s request because the state “admits on the face of the complaint that it does not satisfy the statutory criteria for a bailout.” The motion also brings to the attention of the court the language cited in the NRO article from the Shelby County case, where the D.C. Circuit found Shelby County ineligible for a bailout due to the county’s failure to submit one voting change, much less the numerous unsubmitted voting changes of New Hampshire.

This motion to intervene by a New Hampshire resident and voter, if it is granted, will make it much more difficult for the court to ignore New Hampshire’s noncompliance and the Justice Department’s misbehavior in the case.

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