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Jul 13, 2012

Elections – Fundraising – Corporate Contributions – Donor Recruitment – Reimbursement

U.S. v. Danielczyk In this prosecution of two corporate executives for an alleged scheme of recruiting donors and reimbursing their contributions to Hillary Clinton’s 2006 and 2008 Senate and Presidential Campaigns, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reverses dismissal of a charge of corporation contributions in violation of 2 U.S.C. § 441b(a).

Jun 27, 2012

Elections – Voting Rights Act – Constitutional – Due Process & Equal Protection – Primary Ballots – Disqualification – Civil Practice – Temporary Restraining Order Motion

Smith v. South Carolina Election Commission The plaintiff-candidates allege that Anderson v. South Carolina Election Commission, 725 S.E.2d 704 (S.C. May 2, 2012) (“Anderson I”), rehearing denied Order No. 2012-05-03-05 (S.C. May 3, 2012) (“Anderson Order”), and Florence County Democratic Party v. Florence County Republican Party, Slip Op. No. 27128 (S.C. June 5, 2012), have been [...]

Jun 21, 2012

Elections – Civil Rights – National Voter Registration Act – Application Disclosure

Project Vote/Voting for America Inc. v. Long Virginia election officials violated the National Voter Registration Act by refusing to disclose completed voter registration applications with voters’ Social Security numbers redacted; the 4th Circuit affirms a district court decision that Section 8(i)(L) of the NVRA does apply to such applications and defendants violated the NVRA.

Jun 21, 2012

Elections – Advocacy Group – FEC Regulation – Constitutional – Vagueness Challenge — PAC Disclosures – ‘Major Purpose’ Test

The Real Truth About Abortion Inc. v. FEC Appellant, a Virginia nonprofit group called “The Real Truth About Abortion Inc.,” loses its constitutional challenge to a regulation of the Federal Election Commission that appellant says is unconstitutionally vague with regard to whether “Real Truth” has to make disclosures as a “political action committee.”

Jun 5, 2012

Elections – Anderson – SEI Filing — ‘Public Official’ — ‘Candidate’

Florence County Democratic Party v. Florence County Republican Party Even though S.C. Code Ann. § 8-13-1300(4) defines “public official” to include a “candidate”, candidates with current statements of economic interests (SEIs) on file were not exempt from filing SEIs when they filed their statements of intention of candidacy (SICs).

May 3, 2012

Elections – Administrative – Statement of Economic Interest – Statement of Intention of Candidacy — Simultaneous Filing Requirement

Anderson v. South Carolina Election Commission Non-exempt individuals who are seeking nomination by political party primary to be a candidate for office must file a Statement of Economic Interest (SEI) at the same time and with the same official with whom the individuals file a Statement of Intention of Candidacy (SIC).

Apr 18, 2012

Elections – Civil Rights – Voting Rights Act – Schools & School Boards – At-Large Elections – Multiple Seats – Multiple Votes per Voter

Levy v. Lexington County In 1994, the General Assembly changed elections for the Board of Trustees for School District Three from an annual February vote to a biennial vote at the time of the general election in November (an at-large election in which voters may cast multiple votes to fill multiple seats on the board).

Mar 14, 2012

Elections – Civil Rights – Racial Gerrymandering Claim — Re-Districting – Constitutional – 14th & 15th Amendments — Voting Rights Act

Backus v. South Carolina Although – as they were required to do under the Voting Rights Act – defendants considered race when they drew new legislative districts, plaintiffs failed to show that defendants subordinated traditional race-neutral principals to race as the primary consideration for drawing district lines.

Feb 24, 2012

Elections – Civil Practice – Intervention of Right – Redistricting Plan Challenge

Backus v. State of South Carolina Senator Dick Elliott’s motion to intervene is granted because (1) his motion was timely filed; (2) he as asserting the same causes of action as the existing plaintiffs, his claims will also depend on whether race was intentionally used by defendants as the predominant factor in drawing districts to dilute minority voting strength, and the underlying fac[...]

Dec 1, 2011

Elections – Republican Primary – Presidential Preference – 2008 Statute – Budget Provisos

Beaufort County v. South Carolina State Election Commission Even though the body of S.C. Code Ann. § 17-11-20(B) only requires the State Election Commission to conduct the presidential preference primary in 2008, § 17-11-20(B) is codified as a permanent statute, the act’s title does not limit its effectiveness to 2008, and the General Assembly’s 2012 budget provisos make it clear th[...]

Jul 14, 2011

Elections – Civil Rights – Independent Candidate — Petition Signatures – Residency Requirement

Lux v. Judd A former independent candidate for Congress wins remand of his challenge to a Virginia statutory requirement that petition signatures in support of his candidacy be witnessed by a resident of the Congressional district; the 4th Circuit says the limited rationale underlying the case relied on by the lower court has been superseded by later Supreme Court cases.

Jul 11, 2011

Elections – Municipal – Election Protest – Delay – Incumbents in Office

Cole v. Atlantic Beach Election Commission Respondent’s delays in hearing an election protest, issuing its decision, and ordering a transcript of its hearings allowed incumbents to remain in office (for nearly two years now) after the appellant-challengers garnered more votes in the town council election. We reverse the circuit court’s order affirming respondent’s decision to de-[...]

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