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Update on Outsiders Voting in Ohio:

Yesterday the Columbus Dispatch reported on voter registrations by campaign workers and others (like the Vote from Home folks) who did not live in Ohio, and how election officials are responding.

Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien is telling the presidential campaigns in Ohio that if their out-of-state staff members are just passing through for the Nov. 4 election with no plans to remain, they shouldn't vote in the state, either.

O'Brien has spoken to attorneys for both campaigns and asked election officials to review the residency status of John McCain's and Barack Obama's staff members, as well as those of other get-out-the-vote groups, who have few Ohio ties but registered and requested absentee ballots.

"One thing that is crystal-clear is the law -- if you are a temporary resident or a visitor, you are not entitled to register to vote and you're not entitled to vote," O'Brien, a Republican, told The Dispatch yesterday. . . .

O'Brien's comments about campaign staffers' residency came after a liberal group filed an election complaint alleging that members of McCain's campaign were no different than out-of-state Obama supporters accused of improperly registering and voting here. . . .

Both campaigns' Ohio spokesmen -- Paul Lindsay for McCain and Isaac Baker for Obama -- are among the out-of-staters who've registered in Ohio.

State law defines residency as a fixed habitation "to which, whenever the person is absent, the person has the intention of returning." But the statute also says: "A person shall not be considered to have gained a residence in any county of this state into which the person comes for temporary purposes only, without the intention of making such county the permanent place of abode."

DQ (mail):
I understand why Ohio would say that, but doesn't that depend on what the Ohio election law says. For instance, I am in college in N.Y. with no intention (at the moment) to remain here. Nevertheless, I have been a resident in the state for 30 days and can vote as such... Why would I be any different than a temporary worker?
10.23.2008 10:33am
PDXLawyer (mail):
DQ. If you don't intend to remain in New York, you are not a resident of New York - you are a long-term visitor. Generally, a person retains their old domicile until they establish a new one. So, you remain a resident (and a citizen) of wherever state you last resided in (assuming, of course that you are a U.S. citizen).
10.23.2008 10:46am
Sarcastro (www):
[PDXLawyer domicile is not the same as resident. You described domicile. Residency requirements vary from state to state.]
10.23.2008 11:01am
smitty1e:
Shenanigans suck. Rather than bicker and argue over who moved who, simply publicise the efforts to debase elections and let the court of public opinion weigh in.
Corruption, like software bugs, yields to transparency.
10.23.2008 11:16am
anon345 (mail):
I really love the flag waving Republican traitors (and I use that term advisedly) who are determined to question the legitimacy of this election. Most don't really believe that McCain is winning or will win the election, but they will focus laser like on this to sow hatred and dissent. Reminds me of Dallas in 1963.
10.23.2008 11:21am
CMH:
Domicile is not the same thing as residence, true. The weird quirk here is that Ohio law requires a voter to be a "resident," but the statutory definition of that word is actually phrased in terms of what we would otherwise know as "domicile." (Ohio Rev. Code 3503.02(A) if anyone wants to read it in full, it's quoted in part by in the Dispatch article).

So under Ohio law, eligibility to vote requires a "residence," which is statutorily-defined to be domicile. I've never been able to understand why this is.
10.23.2008 11:26am
Sarcastro (www):
This just in! JFK was killed by a Republican Hatred Laser!
10.23.2008 11:27am
MnZ:
anon345,

Yes, question your opponents' patriotism. No hypocracy in that...
10.23.2008 11:29am
Colin (mail):
Reminds me of Dallas in 1963.

Ugh. That was truly uncalled-for.
10.23.2008 11:36am
cboldt (mail):
-- I really love the flag waving Republican traitors ... --
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I can feeeel the love.
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On the subject of 'residency" and "domicile," each term pops up in a variety of contexts, and neither is sufficient, without more, to define the eligibility requirements that pertain to casting a ballot.
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"Residency" for voting purposes is different from "residency" as used to qualify for in-state tuition; just to pick one example.
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But one quality that is common for the requirement to vote is an intention to stay in the state. That is certainly true in Ohio. I haven't checked NY law in that regard, but would be surprised if it doesn't have a similar requirement.
10.23.2008 11:36am
gab:
I'm sure the couple dozen or so staff members who registered in Ohio will turn the election...
10.23.2008 11:46am
Justin (mail):
So someone whose life choice is to travel from state to state and never settle down forever should be disenfranchised? Or casually connected to a place that person hasn't lived in decades?
10.23.2008 11:47am
JRL:
If you vote early and die before election day does your vote still count? Do you have to be an eligible voter "on election day" for your vote to count? (no Chicago jokes, please)
10.23.2008 11:48am
cboldt (mail):
-- Do you have to be an eligible voter "on election day" for your vote to count? --
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AFAIK, technically yes. Ballots are counted on election day, and any ballot can be disqualified at that time.
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-- So someone whose life choice is to travel from state to state and never settle down forever should be disenfranchised? --
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That question can operate on a couple different levels. Should a person who doesn't live in your town be able to vote your town taxes higher? Choose your selectmen, council, or whatever? Are they truly being "disenfranchised" if they are not affected by the outcome of the election? The answer is obvious, "No."
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But the answer is different on a national election, somewhat attenuated for votes for Congressional representation, but not attenuated at all for a vote for president and vice president.
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The traveler isn't doomed to utter obscurity in voting. He or she declares a certain central point to be one that is "returned to" between travels, even though the duration of return is small. The true transient homeless people, that's a different question. I think it's morally wrong to give them the franchise.
10.23.2008 11:59am
DiverDan (mail):

I really love the flag waving Republican traitors (and I use that term advisedly) who are determined to question the legitimacy of this election. Most don't really believe that McCain is winning or will win the election, but they will focus laser like on this to sow hatred and dissent. Reminds me of Dallas in 1963.


I really love the flag waving Republican Democrat traitors (and I use that term advisedly) who are determined to question the legitimacy of this [i.e., the 2000] election. Most don't really believe that McCain Gore is winning [Florida] or will win the election, but they will focus laser like on this to sow hatred and dissent. Reminds me of Dallas Florida in 1963 2000.
10.23.2008 11:59am
Michelle Dulak Thomson (mail):
Justin,

So someone whose life choice is to travel from state to state and never settle down forever should be disenfranchised? Or casually connected to a place that person hasn't lived in decades?

What are you, Justin, a rootless cosmopolite? ;-)

Seriously, I imagine that the idea is to enforce "one person, one state of residence," if only to prevent people accidentally (or on purpose, of course) voting two or more times per election. No one seems to think it odd that someone who never spends two consecutive months in the same country nevertheless has voting rights only in some one country, usually (not always) the birth country, even if s/he hasn't lived there "in decades."
10.23.2008 12:07pm
Matthew K:
*rolls eyes* Just don't feed the trolls.

To the college question: If you're going to be living in a place for nine months a year for four years, I think you have a decent case that you are a resident. A meaningful number of people move around the country following their jobs and this seems no different; surely you can't disenfranchise everyone who knows they may need to switch towns/states/coasts on the drop of a paycheck.
10.23.2008 12:17pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
There's no problem with college kids making their school location their residence for voting purposes. Except when they do it at Duke.

But, anyway, the problem with dodgy residence issues is the possibility of voting twice or more. The administrative issues of pinning down some millions of people as to where, exactly, they intend to vote and the requirements therefore allow for at least a minimum amount of difficulty.

When somebody decides to make a life choice to travel from state to state according to which state his party needs most, making sure he doesn't pick up a couple on the way is important.
10.23.2008 12:22pm
pete (mail) (www):

AFAIK, technically yes. Ballots are counted on election day, and any ballot can be disqualified at that time.


According to this slate story that depends on the state and the circumstances.


Because election law is governed by states, the rules vary widely when it comes to how this issue is handled. Had Steen lived in Florida, for example, her vote would have counted. Florida state law dictates that "the ballot of an elector who casts an absentee ballot shall be counted even if the elector dies on or before election day" so long as the ballot was postmarked or received by the election supervisor prior to the voter's death. Steen's daughter tells Explainer that she postmarked her mother's absentee ballot on April 29 or April 30, nearly two weeks before Steen passed away.

In 2004, USA Today reported that California, Texas, Tennessee, Ohio, and West Virginia all allow for the counting of absentee ballots of deceased voters while many other states technically do not. Many states that prohibit these so-called "ghost votes," however, lack the reporting system to quickly update voter rolls with recent deaths. That means it's very unlikely that a recently deceased voter would have his or her absentee ballot nullified.


With early voting I think it it would be harder to track since I doubt most states distinguish non- absentee or provisional votes once they have been cast.
10.23.2008 12:23pm
Anderson (mail):
Not only are outsiders infiltrating Ohio to vote -- they're also throwing the polls!

Poll fraud! Poll fraud!
10.23.2008 12:24pm
cboldt (mail):
-- To the college question: If you're going to be living in a place for nine months a year for four years, I think you have a decent case that you are a resident --
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For voting purposes, the law says you have the right to vote in a statewide election only if you intend to return to the same state notwithstanding undertaking the obtaining of an education there. It seems odd to make the determination on something other than duration, but that's the way it works.
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When I was an undergrad, I had no intention to stay in that city (notice, I didn't say "state"?) and I returned to my hometown each summer. College was a "long term temporary" location.
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I would think some commutes set up a similar situation. E.g. the person who commutes to NYC from Hartford (or from Newark). More time in NY, resident of CT (or NJ).
10.23.2008 12:27pm
Sarcastro (www):
]For New York:


students can establish residency if they have a present intention to remain at their school address for the time being, and they intend to make it their principle home

]
10.23.2008 12:32pm
Brian G (mail) (www):
They are violating the Constitutional rights of people to freely travel. How do they know if someone intends to stay or not? Someone has every right to say on November 5th they want to move back to Vermont.

What? They came to vote for McCain? Arrest their asses and haul them off to jail!
10.23.2008 12:39pm
trad and anon (mail):
We didn't cover this in my conlaw class at all, but why isn't the right to vote determined by state citizenship? State citizenship is a matter of constitutional right, not of state statute.

These "permanent abode" requirements (even for domicile) have always struck me as kind of weird. I have no state that I intend to make my permanent abode. If I find a better job elsewhere, or I get married and my spouse needs to change cities for work, or the laws of my current state change in such a way that I don't want to live there anymore, I'll move. There are a fair number of other people in the same position (especially those who live in metro areas that cover multiple states like the New York or St. Louis areas, and could therefore easily change states if they change apartments or buy a house).

As some point I expect that I will have a state I intend to make my permanent place of abode but that won't be for some time.
10.23.2008 12:43pm
cboldt (mail):
-- They are violating the Constitutional rights of people to freely travel. --
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Either you're being sarcastic, or you're a Democrat.
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-- How do they know if someone intends to stay or not? Someone has every right to say on November 5th they want to move back to Vermont --
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In New York, the question of intent to stay, if challenged, is decided by the board of elections in each county.
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NY Election law: 5-104. Qualifications of voters; residence, gaining or losing. (caution, 3.5 Mb PDF file of complete code)
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2. In determining a voter's qualification to register and vote, the board to which such application is made shall consider, in addition to the applicant's expressed intent, his conduct and all attendant surrounding circumstances relating thereto. The board taking such registration may consider the applicant's financial independence, business pursuits, employment, income sources, residence for income tax purposes, age, marital status, residence of parents, spouse and children, if any, leaseholds, sites of personal and real property owned by the applicant, motor vehicle and other personal property registration, and other such factors that it may reasonably deem necessary to determine the qualification of an applicant to vote in an election district within its jurisdiction. The decision of a board to which such application is made shall be presumptive evidence of a person's residence for voting purposes.

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So, look for driver's license, auto registration, bills being sent to the person's residence, etc.
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I agree with you, people can change where they intend to live, and can do so the day of the election, not just the day before or day after. They vote "where they are" at the moment.
10.23.2008 12:50pm
Dave N (mail):
Way back in 1984, long before law school, I was a campaign worker in the Philadelphia suburbs. I arrived in early September and was there through the election (I left the weekend after).

I was working for a candidate with a close race and, under the theory that every vote counted, I changed my registration from Utah to Pennsylvania.

In any event, I voted in Pennsylvania and returned to my home in Utah. Before the next election came around, I went to register to vote in Utah and was told that I did not need to do so--since I was still registered there and had not moved.

I could have voted twice rather easily. And nobody would have been the wiser.
10.23.2008 12:54pm
cboldt (mail):
-- These "permanent abode" requirements (even for domicile) have always struck me as kind of weird. --
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They don't mean "permanent" the way you are taking it. A better phrase would be "I'll stay here (and come back here after business and pleasure trips) until I decide to relocate to a place not yet (and maybe never) decided."
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I'd relocate from my "permanent" residence if the right opportunity presented itself, or for any other reason. But I don't have any present intention or plan that has particularity attached to it.
10.23.2008 12:54pm
Bob from Ohio (mail):

So someone whose life choice is to travel from state to state and never settle down forever should be disenfranchised?


Yes.

Likewise anyone who uses the term "life choice".
10.23.2008 12:56pm
cboldt (mail):
-- I could have voted twice rather easily. And nobody would have been the wiser. --
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The snow-bird population in FL is able to do the same thing. I think voting in 2 states is a fairly common practice, like speeding, it's not apt to be caught.
10.23.2008 12:56pm
news reader:
The true transient homeless people, that's a different question. I think it's morally wrong to give them the franchise.


“Morally wrong,” cboldt?

In jurisdictions where the homeless are legally entitled to vote, do you then advocate civil disobedience?
10.23.2008 12:58pm
rarango (mail):
Perhaps the take away point, as suggested by Dave N and my experience here in TN is, the the registration and voting system ultimately relies on the honesty of each citizen. State elections systems are not staffed to investigate the legitimacy of every single registration or ballot cast by an individual voter. And if that was really their task, we would probably find them about as friendly as your local DMV office.
10.23.2008 1:01pm
Anderson (mail):
The true transient homeless people, that's a different question. I think it's morally wrong to give them the franchise.

Oyyyyy.

Because you're not an American if you don't have a home?

Why not require capital of $500,000 or more while we're at it, to be sure that voters are, ah, sufficiently invested in America?
10.23.2008 1:01pm
Nunzio:
Caine from Kung Fu just voted in Ohio
10.23.2008 1:02pm
eyesay:
DiverDan, many of us loyal Americans do challenge the legitimacy of the 2000 election, but contrary to your version, we do believe that Gore won in Florida and legitimately won in 2000. We make no attempt to sow hatred. We don't hate President George W. Bush or anyone else. Hate doesn't solve anything. Those who aided and abetted this fraud on the nation, including Governor Jeb Bush and (in an outrageous conflict of interest) Secretary of State cum Florida Bush Campaign Manager Katherine Harris, may be criminals, but they are not traitors.

Love,

Eyesay
10.23.2008 1:16pm
LarryA (mail) (www):
I'm sure the couple dozen or so staff members who registered in Ohio will turn the election...
Our local TV news, KENS5 San Antonio, had this story last night about several van-loads of campaign workers heading from SA to Ohio to work for Obama in the election. It was almost an advertorial, as it said limited space for the all-expenses-paid trip was still available. The 1:48 segment took five seconds to mention that the McCain campaign was also sending people in.

Several van-loads per large city is a lot more than a couple of dozen.
But, anyway, the problem with dodgy residence issues is the possibility of voting twice or more.
I'd say that voting twice wouldn't be as much of a distortion as temporarily relocating a bunch of people to a battleground state. Here in Texas you could vote a hundred times, and it won't change the outcome.
To the college question: If you're going to be living in a place for nine months a year for four years, I think you have a decent case that you are a resident
The answer here is "it depends." The first time I went to Texas A&M I still had a bedroom in my parent's house in San Antonio, where I lived for the summer, long holidays, and occasional weekends. It was more my "residence" than the dorm rooms I lived in. So I voted in SA. The second time I went to Texas A&M was after I got out of the Army. I had a wife and daughter, and we had another daughter while we were there. We still visited our parents in San Antonio and stayed in my old bedroom, but it wasn't my "residence" as much as the house we rented off campus. So we voted in College Station. It should be the voters' choice, as long as they only get one choice.
10.23.2008 1:19pm
cboldt (mail):
-- In jurisdictions where the homeless are legally entitled to vote, do you then advocate civil disobedience? --
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Depending on the nature of the civil disobedience, I advocate it (or not) everywhere. But if the law provides for completely transient homeless people to vote, I won't stand in their way or raise any sort of substantive fuss over it. Doesn't mean I don't think the lawmaker who provides for it is an idiot or a partisan.
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-- Because you're not an American if you don't have a home? Why not require capital of $500,000 or more while we're at it, to be sure that voters are, ah, sufficiently invested in America? --
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My sense that utterly transient (here today, gone tomorrow) homeless people are morally disqualified to vote stems in part from them voting on local issues. What's to say they don't pick YOUR town as one that has a bunch of voters who will pass laws that amount to a "homeless sanctuary." Free food, free medical care for anybody who shows up - no ID, no questions asked. As a freeloader, I'm very attracted to your town, and I'll come in and vote for you to give me your money, and for you to care for me.
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I know people who support that sort of world, and I'm knockin' 'em as out of touch with human nature and reality.
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I think there's a case to be made for "welfare, or vote, pick one."
10.23.2008 1:19pm
Cornellian (mail):
So on the day you arrive in Ohio you're entitled to register and vote there if you intend to remain, but if you've been in Ohio for a year you can't register and vote there if you were only planning to stay for 13 months. Doesn't it seem like such a rule would be hard to enforce?
10.23.2008 1:21pm
cboldt (mail):
eyesay: -- We make no attempt to sow hatred. ... Those who aided and abetted this fraud on the nation, including Governor Jeb Bush and (in an outrageous conflict of interest) Secretary of State cum Florida Bush Campaign Manager Katherine Harris, may be criminals ... --
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I guess it depends on what one means by "sow hatred." Distortion and lie, if it doesn't cause irrational dislike, is not sowing hatred. But it's still sowing distortion, lie, and unjustified accusations that the target of attack is a criminal.
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I don't hate you eyesay, but I despise and loathe your blog-role person and tactics. I have the same feeling toward your fellow travelers. I don't hate you, but it's irrational to trust a demonstrated prevaricator.
10.23.2008 1:30pm
Joe Kowalski (mail):
As much as I would dislike the creation of a new federal bureaucracy, as mobile as the population is getting, having a nationwide voter registration database would be quite useful at coordinating problems like this.
10.23.2008 1:41pm
PLR:
But it's still sowing distortion, lie, and unjustified accusations that the target of attack is a criminal.

I don't see how eyesay's accusations re J. Bush and K. Harris can legitimately be termed "unjustified" when they are essentially the same as the official findings and recommendations of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission. If those officials have been exonerated of those accusations, I'm not aware of it.
10.23.2008 1:47pm
Nunzio:
PLR

The U.S. Civil Rights Commission is a joke. They couldn't "find" their ass with both hands.

That said, I have my doubts about Florida in 2000 just as I have my doubts about Texas and Illinois in 1960.

Let's get over it, shall we?
10.23.2008 2:03pm
rarango (mail):
Nunzio said it bit more indelicately than I might have, but much more to the point. I was not aware that the US Civil rights commission was pure as the driven snow non-partisan. Certainly, if they said it about Governor Bush and SecState Harris, it has to be true and no further debate is required.
10.23.2008 2:10pm
Deoxy (mail):
Issues that I know of in FL 2000:

1) publicly called before the polls closed. Impossible to quantify, but the loss of at least 100s of net Republican votes is a given.

2) fragility of pre-punched cards - if I didn't vote for President, it would be EXCEEDINGLY easy for my "no vote" ballot to become a vote for either candidate. This could happen on purpose or on accident - the more the ballot is handled, the more likely this is.

3) temptation to commit fraud: one person counting was caught making stacks of 75 for one candidate and stancs of 100 for the other, then counting them all as 100s. I won't mention which way was which, but you can go look it up if you care.

4) opportunity to commit fraud: the more times you handle the ballots, the more people there are involved, and the more opportunities. There was a woman caught slipping a ballot under the door to the people counting.

5) MOUNDS of chads that used to be attached to a ballot. See #2 above for why this is bad.

6) selective recounting.

In short, there were lots of problems, and the counting would become less reliable not more so the more times it was counted.

Make of that what you wish. Having done fairly extensive research on the topic myself, I am satisfied that the course of action (stop the counting and go with it) was the right one. Of course, since that ended up leaving the candidate I disliked less as the winner, that could be bias speaking, but I have gone to fairly extensive efforts to try to make the decision bias-free.

Back on topic, the shenanigans in Ohio are ridiculous, but this particular point is fairly minimal, really, as long as both sides are treated equally (which appears to be the case at the moment). Allowing one side to get around it while stopping the other side would be pretty bad, and I'm sure the Ohio SoS is looking for a way to do so as we speak.
10.23.2008 2:22pm
cboldt (mail):
PLR: -- I don't see how eyesay's accusations re J. Bush and K. Harris can legitimately be termed "unjustified" when they are essentially the same as the official findings and recommendations of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission. --
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The U.S. Civil Rights Commission found that Governor Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris may have committed criminal acts?
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I also don't discount the possibility that the report itself contains examples of distortion, lie, and unjustified accusations. A number of dissenting points of view, as well as substantiated accusations of irregularities by the Commission itself (e.g., rejecting any input from non-paid organizations), are hanging out there.
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Link to U.S. Commission on Civil Rights Report on Voting Irregularities in Florida During the 2000 Presidential Election
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Not to defend the mechanics of the voting systems in the US. I think aspects of our voting system are like those of a banana republic.
10.23.2008 2:23pm
josh:
I find this to be some what of a load of ___. In a prior life, I DID move from state to state on occasion. I always marveled at how the local authorities were quite interested in me paying whatever fees necessary to register my car, change state plates etc. I got a couple of tickets in various places for that in a far shorter amount of time that this article seems to indicate would be required to be allowed to register to vote. (i.e., I'd get a new driver's license but not new plates and would get a ticket as being a resident without proper plates).

To say someone can live somewhere long enough to get ticketed for not having in-state plates on a car, but not long enough to vote is ludicrous.

I find this whole issue rather sad. I recall, as Gore supporter in 2000, I was against the Fla recount. What could I say? I live in Chicago. It's difficult to me to see how voting irregularities in one place that happened to be close or report results later required special treatment, particularly when my home was known for historical problems. My view then was, and is now, play be the rules as they exist at the time of the game, and if you don't like the rules, change them before the next game starts.

Adler has identified an issue he deems vital to the Republic (Democrat Bill Stinson "literally stole the election"!!!!!!)

Fine. Let's change the rules so everyone who is entitled to vote gets to vote. I'm not even that against requiring ID, so long as we actually let everyone who is entitled to vote do so.

But let's get over the rules in the middle of the game. Saying someone who "resides" in a state for a short period of time can't vote is ridiculous. It deprives too many legit voters from voting.
10.23.2008 2:29pm
josh:
PS

Adler, you're a law professor for F sake. It'd be nice to read one post outlining how the law SHOULD be (one that is intellectually honest enough to address not just the rampant fraud you so decry, but also provides real changes to the system to prevent future disenfranchisement -- ie, letting everyone vote that is allowed to, and allowing candidates and third parties to do voter-registration drives that register those permissible voters)
10.23.2008 2:33pm
MG:
Is it possible that a person (over 18, not a felon) would not be eligible to vote in any state? It seems like a fundamental right, but I guess I don't know where it would be guaranteed in the Constitution. If each state gets to determine the eligible voters (and I think they do), the states could have inconsistent rules and completely disenfranchise a person.

Also, it seems like a person should not get to vote twice, but if both of the states are okay with it, is there a law against it?
10.23.2008 2:37pm
cboldt (mail):
-- Saying someone who "resides" in a state for a short period of time can't vote is ridiculous. It deprives too many legit voters from voting. --
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It doesn't deprive them of the vote. I changes the location of their vote.
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It isn't too much to ask a voter, to be aware of the location where they are qualified to vote. People who are going to Ohio for a transient purpose come from some other location. They can vote from that place - absentee if need be.
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It's fairly transparent that some politically active partisans relocate to battleground states with no intention of living there past the election. I am pleased, however, to read people openly advocate this sort of activity, instead of cheating in secret. It's also fairly transparent when elected officials (SoS Brunner in Ohio, I'm looking at you) facilitate cheating by making it easy to accomplish and hard to detect.
10.23.2008 2:43pm
NickM (mail) (www):
Any campaign operative with a modicum of intelligence from either party can just say "I think I'll stay here. I like it here." That makes their voter registration legitimate. [It also means they would be committing a crime to vote in their old state as well, but that's another matter.] What makes the "Vote from Home" group distinguishable is that they advertised their intention to be in Ohio for just a few weeks pre-election and not return to Ohio at all. Too clever by half, to say the least.

As far as voting by the homeless, I know of 2 cities in the Los Angeles area with tiny populations and large municipal budgets, due to most of the city being comprised of commercial/industrial property - Vernon and City of Industry. [Vernon has less than 60 registered voters and CoI has less than 200 registered voters, IIRC.] A fairly small group of homeless people could completely take over both cities and reorient the city finances to their personal benefit. [A group of 8 non-homeless people tried to do that in Vernon a couple years ago, and the city government's responses were grossly illegal and resulted in the city losing several lawsuits, but that group was too small to flip the election.]
I don't have a good solution to prevent an orchestrated takeover of that nature. Homeless people don't get to vote is not a good solution.

Nick
10.23.2008 2:43pm
unhyphenatedconservative (mail):
Sarcastro,

It had to be the hatred laser because the the angry sea bass would be too obvious,
10.23.2008 2:45pm
cboldt (mail):
-- Is it possible that a person (over 18, not a felon) would not be eligible to vote in any state? --
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Yes, by failing to take the steps the state law requires for registering. The typical requirement for registering (county by county (parish by parish in Looziana?) is how this goes) is to be an of-age resident (see extended discussions above) in that county.
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-- Also, it seems like a person should not get to vote twice, but if both of the states are okay with it, is there a law against it? --
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Yes. Many of them. Each state has a "register here only if you aren't registered elsewhere" law.
10.23.2008 2:47pm
TruthInAdvertising:
"Is it possible that a person (over 18, not a felon) would not be eligible to vote in any state? "

Possibly. The constitution doesn't guarantee you a right to vote, it only guarantees that you won't be denied the right to vote because of your race, color, previous state of servitude, gender, failure to pay taxes or age. On the other hand, I would be hard to see how equal protection or privileges or immunities issues wouldn't be raised by a scheme that disenfranchised people who are otherwise eligible to vote.
10.23.2008 2:49pm
TruthInAdvertising:
"Yes. Many of them. Each state has a "register here only if you aren't registered elsewhere" law."

That didn't answer the question. If two states passed a law allowing voters to vote in both, at least for local and possibly state elections, it doesn't seem like that would raise any federal constitutional concerns.
10.23.2008 2:51pm
cboldt (mail):
-- Homeless people don't get to vote is not a good solution. --
.

I'm much more hung up on "transient" than I am on homeless. The two terms tend to be used interchangeably, but I have more sympathy with a person who chooses to stay in a certain place, than with a person who chooses to shift around. If you aren't going to stay where you're affecting the vote, why should you get the vote?
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Transients end up being a pool of votes that the partisans relocate to nearby battleground states. That's not a good result.
10.23.2008 2:53pm
cboldt (mail):
-- That didn't answer the question. If two states passed a law allowing voters to vote in both, at least for local and possibly state elections, it doesn't seem like that would raise any federal constitutional concerns. --
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But no state has passed a law that says it's okay to vote in two states (or two towns, or counties, or even on some sort of limited ballot). Does that answer the question in a form that you understand?
10.23.2008 2:55pm
josh:
Cbolt

Good point, and I think you're right. And I will only confess the truth, which is that, for those of us who have ever been in jobs that require multiple moves multiple times over multiple months, it's not as easy as it sounds (that is, it's not as easy if you have an aversion to making your "permanent" place of residence, or whatever is required, your parents' house, when you're over 30).

I think I may have shot from the hip a bit too quick. But I base that on being a little tired of the issue on a law blog that has yet to propose a solution other than "prosecute ACORN!" I don't think it smacks of moral equivalence to say that both parties benefit and suffer from various abuses of the voting laws. It would be nice if we could, as I said above, change the rules of the game a little ex ante, so everyone was a little more comfortable with the process, while still allowing eligible voters to vote AND allowing the registration of eligible voters.

I haven't really seen any proposed solutions that aren't particularly one-sided.
10.23.2008 2:58pm
TruthInAdvertising:
"Does that answer the question in a form that you understand?"

No, it doesn't address whether such a proposal would be legal if adopted which is what MG was asking.
10.23.2008 2:58pm
cboldt (mail):
-- it doesn't address whether such a proposal would be legal if adopted which is what MG was asking. --
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Whether it would be constitutional under the US constitution (it would be legal in each state, by the definition in the proposition - two states agree to allow one person to vote twice in national elections, once in each state). That would probably not pass the laugh test, let alone the constitution. Denial of equal rights to the people who lived in the other 48 states, who only get one vote apiece.
10.23.2008 3:03pm
ChrisIowa (mail):

Is it possible that a person (over 18, not a felon) would not be eligible to vote in any state? It seems like a fundamental right, but I guess I don't know where it would be guaranteed in the Constitution.

At the time of the 1976 election, I was leaving graduate school. I cast my absentee vote in Iowa and was driving a U-Haul to a job in California on election day and watched the election returns at a motel in Wyoming. I don't know that part of Iowa election law, but I may not have been legally eligible to vote anywhere. From what I read here, in some states I would have been ineligible to vote as soon as I accepted a job in a different state.
10.23.2008 3:13pm
Brian G (mail) (www):
I said:

-- They are violating the Constitutional rights of people to freely travel. --
.
Cboldt responded:

Either you're being sarcastic, or you're a Democrat.

Uh, yes on the first part, no way on the second part. If you had read the rest of it, you would have seen that I was being completely sarcastic, as we all know if people were doing that to vote for McCain, all of a sudden there would be people who wanted the law enforced.

Thanks for the serious response though. I learned something new, which I always enjoy.

In response to several other people, all I know about Florida in 2000 is that Bush won under any circumstances. Media outlets spent millions trying to prove he didn't because he did not. Although the trustworthiness of this article is suspect because it is in the New York Times, it is likley true since if they could have said Gore won, they certainyl would have:

EXAMINING THE VOTE: THE OVERVIEW; Study of Disputed Florida Ballots Finds Justices Did Not Cast the Deciding Vote
10.23.2008 3:50pm
guy in the veal calf office (mail) (www):
The Ohio tax authority ought to send these people letters requesting tax returns be filed, as required of all residents. The perpetrators may not owe taxes, but they'll sure get some Ohio tax attorneys &CPAs work wading through the domicilary and residency issues.
10.23.2008 3:58pm
J. F. Thomas (mail):
Should a person who doesn't live in your town be able to vote your town taxes higher? Choose your selectmen, council, or whatever? Are they truly being "disenfranchised" if they are not affected by the outcome of the election? The answer is obvious, "No."

Should a town that doesn't want you to participate in the political process, and does everything in their power to prevent it, be able to count you as part of the population for the purposes of federal and state aid. The answer is obvious, "No." Yet most most college towns do just that. (Since such aid is based on the census and census figures are tallied while school is in session, college towns' populations include generally their student populations).
10.23.2008 4:01pm
cboldt (mail):
-- From what I read here, in some states I would have been ineligible to vote as soon as I accepted a job in a different state. --
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The eligibility requirement is typically eligibility to register. You registered to vote in Iowa. At the time, you either had (or lied about) an intention to stay in Iowa until you formed another definite plan for relocation. E.g., at the time you registered to vote, you weren't looking at a slew of out-of-state job offers. You were staying put, in that apartment (or whatever) until something came along.
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I've also entered employment arrangements that involved, by design, a series of 6-9 month stints, each of them in a different state. I knew going in to a state that I had no intention to stay there. I'd claim as "domicile" the place I'd go if I got fired. Just another way to look at it, I'm sure that issue is answered different ways by different people; and that very few have no idea of "the place they call home."
10.23.2008 4:01pm
cboldt (mail):
-- Should a town that doesn't want you to participate in the political process, and does everything in their power to prevent it, be able to count you as part of the population for the purposes of federal and state aid. The answer is obvious, "No." --
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ROTFL. That's almost a clever "apples v. oranges" construction.
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I disagree with the outcome (No) too. Felons can't vote, and they are counted in the census. Same with people under the age of 18.
10.23.2008 4:11pm
pauldom:
@BrianG:

In response to several other people, all I know about Florida in 2000 is that Bush won under any circumstances.

BrianG, you may find your belief comforting, but it's just not true. Even the article you linked to states that it's not true. e.g.,

The study, conducted over the last 10 months by a consortium of eight news organizations assisted by professional statisticians, examined numerous hypothetical ways of recounting the Florida ballots. Under some methods, Mr. Gore would have emerged the winner; in others, Mr. Bush. But in each one, the margin of victory was smaller than the 537-vote lead that state election officials ultimately awarded Mr. Bush. . . .

A statistical analysis conducted for The Times determined that if all counties had followed state law in reviewing the absentee ballots, Mr. Gore would have picked up as many as 290 additional votes, enough to tip the election in Mr. Gore's favor in some of the situations studied in the statewide ballot review. . . .

If all the ballots had been reviewed under any of seven single standards, and combined with the results of an examination of overvotes, Mr. Gore would have won, by a very narrow margin. For example, using the most permissive ''dimpled chad'' standard, nearly 25,000 additional votes would have been reaped, yielding 644 net new votes for Mr. Gore and giving him a 107-vote victory margin. . . .

Using the most restrictive standard -- the fully punched ballot card -- 5,252 new votes would have been added to the Florida total, producing a net gain of 652 votes for Mr. Gore, and a 115-vote victory margin.

All the other combinations likewise produced additional votes for Mr. Gore, giving him a slight margin over Mr. Bush, when at least two of the three coders agreed.

The article does report that Bush would have won even if the recount hadn't been stopped, given the way the recount was analyzing the ballots. But that is not the same thing as "Bush won under any circumstances."

Even a "common sense" standard shows that Bush did not "win" more votes in any real-world "intent of the voter" sense . . . unless you believe that all those South Florida Jews intended to vote for Buchanan, or that all those citizens whose names were sorta kinda similar to the names of felons intended to vote for Bush.
10.23.2008 4:29pm
RichH55:
Cboldt - Whether it would be constitutional under the US constitution (it would be legal in each state, by the definition in the proposition - two states agree to allow one person to vote twice in national elections, once in each state). That would probably not pass the laugh test, let alone the constitution. Denial of equal rights to the people who lived in the other 48 states, who only get one vote apiece.


Why should that matter though with national elections under the Electoral College?

Under this theory wouldn't a resident and voter of California or Texas (no partisan qualms that way) have an equal rights claim against any voter in Wyoming or Vermont? When you crunch the numbers those votes in California and Texas votes count as less than 1 vote per 1 person and Wyoming gets alot more (perhaps even to the level of each vote is akin to 2 votes). Would the Constitutional argument be only math based then?
10.23.2008 4:49pm
cboldt (mail):
-- Why should that matter though with national elections under the Electoral College? --
.
Are you serious? That's tantamount to an argument that the Electoral College is unconstitutional in light of equal protection. Now, you may be all for abolition of the Electoral College (be against it is all the rage these days, among enlightened progressives), but for the time being, there is is, aiming to keep each of 50 states on equal footing, even though they differ in population, resources, abilities and needs.
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We each get to choose which state we reside in, and that state will tally our ballot. There's nothing to keep one from moving to a state with small population, so your vote will "have more impact."
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Under the scheme that you think is hunky dory, some people would get to cast two ballots, by picking an arrangement of "we don't care how many times you vote" states.
10.23.2008 4:59pm
J. F. Thomas (mail):
I disagree with the outcome (No) too. Felons can't vote, and they are counted in the census. Same with people under the age of 18.

Actually, in most states Felons can vote after they have served their sentences and in a couple of states even while they are behind bars. The point is that while at first glance it may seem perfectly rational to say college students shouldn't register to vote where they go to school, there are real benefits that the community derives from having a university in its town directly related to the presence of the students. Certainly, if a student feels strongly enough about his college community to switch his voter registration to that town, there shouldn't be any legal obstacle to it, as he is almost certainly considered a resident of that town for census purposes.
10.23.2008 5:07pm
eyesay:
Deoxy, you can talk about chads if you want, but the stubborn facts remain: No state in American history, other than Florida, has ever hired a private company to strip voters from the voter rolls. As Florida Secretary of State, Katherine Harris hired a company to do just that, and the company stripped approximately 50,000 voters from the rolls. The great majority of these voters were African-American. Thousands of these stripped-from-the rolls citizens were not felons at all, but had the misfortune of having names identical to, or similar to, other felons. This illegal disenfranchisement &mdash each of which is a crime — was deliberately perpetrated by Katherine Harris, who ought to be in jail for thousands of terms, served consecutively. And I don't hate her. I just want her in prison!
10.23.2008 5:10pm
cboldt (mail):
-- Certainly, if a student feels strongly enough about his college community to switch his voter registration to that town, there shouldn't be any legal obstacle to it --
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There isn't any, as far as I know. Or at least whatever the requirement is, it pertains equally to students and non-students.
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Not so for tuition purposes, but that's a whole different kettle of fish.
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I agree completely that a student can make a positive contribution to the community, including voting and even holding office. It's perfectly reasonable to require them to obtain residency before they vote or run for office.
10.23.2008 5:14pm
Dave N (mail):
Eyesay wrote:
Those who aided and abetted this fraud on the nation, including Governor Jeb Bush and (in an outrageous conflict of interest) Secretary of State cum Florida Bush Campaign Manager Katherine Harris, may be criminals[.]
I wonder what law eyesay thinks Jeb Bush violated. The Civil Right's Commission's Executive Summary (sorry, I have neither the time nor the inclination to read the entire report) suggests NONE:
Florida's governor insisted that he had no specific role in election operations and pointed to his secretary of state as the responsible official. After the election, however, the governor exercised leadership and responsibility in electoral matters in the commendable action of appointing a task force to make recommendations to fix the problems that occurred.
While the summary is more critical of Kathleen Harris, it points to no actions on her part that could be considered crimes.

I would also note that Jeb Bush, as George's brother recused himself from even the ministerial role of certifying Florida's electoral votes.

Yet Eyesay doesn't hate anyone, he or she just defames them.
10.23.2008 5:15pm
Bama 1L:
cboldt, try this one:

Suppose a state allows anyone who shows up at the polling place to vote for offices except for President and Vice President of the United States regardless of whether they have registered or voted in other states.

Is there a problem under the federal constitution?

If so, what?

And who can bring a challenge?
10.23.2008 5:16pm
Chem_Geek:
The solution is easy: purple fingers.
10.23.2008 5:23pm
cboldt (mail):
-- Suppose a state allows anyone who shows up at the polling place to vote for offices except for President and Vice President of the United States regardless of whether they have registered or voted in other states. Is there a problem under the federal constitution? --
.
For talking purposes, I'm going to add in offices except for Congressional Representative and Federal Senator, just to limit the ballot to one that contains only state-related candidates and issues.
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So, what you are proposing is to let out of state residents vote on in-state matters.
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I don't know what to call the infirmity that would result. Maybe you can lobby your local officials to invite all comers (who cares what state or even country they come from, if they can get here, let them vote!), and the resulting legal challenge will flesh out the answer.
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For me it doesn't get past the laugh test, to the extent that I'm so far unable to ponder the constitutional dimension.
10.23.2008 5:24pm
eyesay:
Many African-Americans reported police roadblocks that turned them away en route to attempting to vote in 2000.

I believe that Gov. Jeb Bush had some role to play in allowing those roadblocks to exist.

This belief is supported, among other things, by the fact that, after the first news accounts called Florida for Gore, W. was recorded saying to Jeb something like, "I thought you fixed Florida." I believe that I know what this meant.

If this sounds like a conspiracy theory, fine. I don't have proof in hand that can convict Jeb (but I don't think a full investigation has ever been conducted).

I still think Katherine Harris is a kilofelon, and I still don't hate her.
10.23.2008 5:29pm
cboldt (mail):
Perhaps it violates the "guarantee of republican form of government," wehre there is a relationship between the governed and THEIR ability to select those who will govern.
10.23.2008 5:29pm
davod (mail):
I did not have time to read all 76 posts so someone may have already posted on this.


It seems in Nashville you can drive up with a busload of non-English speakers march them into the voting booth and have your own interpreter go in the booth with them - Voting Fraud in Nashville

I recommend reading the complete article. However, the following is included as a teaser:

"Accordingly, Ray Barrett, Davidson County Administrator of Elections, instructed his employees to refuse to allow any of these individuals to vote.

However, someone prevailed upon Mr. Barrett to call the state in order to verify the Commission's decision. Brook Thompson, the Tennessee State Election Coordinator, then ordered Mr. Barrett and the Davidson County Election Commission to allow these non-English-speaking individuals to vote through their bilingual interpreter despite their lack of any sort of identification and total unfamiliarity with the English language"
10.23.2008 5:47pm
Dave N (mail):
Ah Eyesay, you DO think that Jeb Bush violated the law (and so did George W.) because they conspired to do so. And your "proof" is an ambiguous statement George said to Jeb.

BDS at its finest.
10.23.2008 5:47pm
davod (mail):
"Many African-Americans reported police roadblocks that turned them away en route to attempting to vote in 2000"

The above was never verified.

Do we really have to go through this crap forever?
10.23.2008 6:00pm
rarango (mail):
eyesay will be able to take comfort when Acorn and the fellating MSM steal the 2008 election for Senator Obama. Turn about and all of that. Perhaps then, his long national nightmare will end.
10.23.2008 6:05pm
news reader:
So, what you are proposing is to let out of state residents vote on in-state matters.


Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP): Frequently Asked Questions: Questions for Overseas Citizens:

Can I vote absentee?

You can vote absentee in any election for Federal office if you are a U.S. citizen 18 years or older and are a U.S. citizen residing outside the United States.

If I do not maintain a legal residence in the U.S., what is my "legal state of residence"?

Your "legal state of residence" for voting purposes is the state or territory where you last resided immediately prior to your departure from the United States. This applies to overseas citizens even though you may not have property or other ties in your last state of residence and your intent to return to that state may be uncertain.

U.S. citizens who are no longer residents of any state —and have no intention returning— do vote in local elections.

See this Jerusalem Post story “Israel to become ultimate swing state” (23 Oct 2008):
Approximately half of some 42,000 registered US voters living in Israel are voting in swing states such as Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania, and could have an effect on the turnouts of those elections, according to Shimon Greenspan, director of the nonpartisan Vote From Israel organization, which helps Americans living in Israel to register and cast their absentee ballots.
10.23.2008 6:11pm
Melancton Smith:
There is no such thing as a "National Election." State's retain the right to operate their State Elections (including electoral college delegates) as they see fit as long as they don't violate certain unalienable rights along the way.
10.23.2008 6:18pm
TruthInAdvertising:
"It seems in Nashville you can drive up with a busload of non-English speakers march them into the voting booth and have your own interpreter go in the booth with them - Voting Fraud in Nashville"

If you're going to post this stuff, can we at least get a story that:

1) Has an actual source who actually can vouch for what happened at the polling site.
2) Not repeat the lie that the voters had no ID.
3) Claim it as proof of voter fraud when you've produced zero evidence of voter fraud, even from the details that you've provided.

I noted that you conveniently left out this little bit of the story which definitely should be flagged:

"The Davidson County Election Commission, including its Democrat members, decided that the individuals would not be allowed to vote on the grounds that since they were unable to speak, understand, or read English, they could not possibly be citizens, and therefore were not qualified to vote."

Last time I checked, the ability to speak English is not a requirement to vote or to be a citizen. Does it make it harder for those people? It sure does but that's scary that an Election Commission intended to disenfranchise those voters based on the fact that they can't speak English.
10.23.2008 6:23pm
Sarcastro (www):

Acorn and the fellating MSM

I totally know what to name my new band now!
10.23.2008 6:45pm
cboldt (mail):
-- U.S. citizens who are no longer residents of any state -and have no intention returning- do vote in local elections. --
.

I'm not arguing, just fleshing out observations.
.

The first link you provided, Federal Voting Assistance Program, includes something referred to as a "back-up Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB)." Within that (where ALL entries are write in!) is a space for writing in the names of state offices, and indicates that some state permit the FWAB to be used to cast votes for state races. It also recites, "Consult your state section in the Voting Assistance Guide to determine your state's policy."

.

The Federal Registration and Absentee Ballot Request (FPCA), sent to the local (state) officials, asks to be provided with ballots "for all elections in which I am eligible to vote." Following that, there is a series of mutually-exclusive checkboxes, one of which indicates an indefinite presence outside the US.

.

I wonder if states provide ballots with limited choices, to out of country individuals who assert that they are out of the state indefinitely.

.

The second link, Israel to become ultimate swing state, is referring only to the US National election contests, so sheds no light on the question of permitting an out-of-state resident from voting on an in-state issue.

.

Agreed full, there are some in-state residents who are physically absent for long durations. But whatever state they claim residence in, it is supposed to be only one.
10.23.2008 6:48pm
cboldt (mail):
-- So, what you are proposing is to let out of state residents vote on in-state matters. --
.
I had something more narrow in mind when I wrote that, and it should have been obvious from the context of the dialog that the statement was made in. Restated for clarity:
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So, what you are proposing is to let residents of one state vote on matters pertinent to another, different state.
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That makes more clear that the question was "what about a single person voting on state matters in two different states?" question.
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The question of whether or not it's appropriate for a state to extend the franchise to people who are absent for extended periods (by that I mean years) is a different matter.
10.23.2008 6:54pm
cboldt (mail):
-- There is no such thing as a "National Election." --
.
Point taken. Sloppy rhetoric on my part, repeated several times. I was referring to election contests where the office in question was a federal office, i.e., Congressional Rep, Senator, US President and VP. Obviously, Reps and Senators are statewide (or smaller) elections, even though the person winning the contest takes office as part of the federal government. And president and VP elections are indirect. The people choose electors - candidate names on the ballot are useful guides, but the voter does not vote for the office of President or VP.
10.23.2008 7:01pm
eyesay:
Still think Florida didn't disenfranchise black voters? The U.K. Independent reported, among other things:

* The punch-card machines used in African-American neighbourhoods rejected about 4 per cent of their ballots. More affluent neighbourhoods dominated by white voters tended to use a more reliable optical scanning system, which rejected only 1.4 per cent of theirs.

* In Miami-Dade County, one of three areas where the Gore campaign is contesting the election results, predominantly black precincts saw their votes thrown out at twice the rate of Hispanic precincts and nearly four times that of mostly white precincts. The New York Times estimated that Mr Gore lost almost 7,000 votes in Miami-Dade alone.

* Election officials in Miami and Tampa sent emergency supplies of laptop computers to some precincts to help poll workers to verify whether voters were registered. The computers were sent to more affluent areas that tended to vote for Mr Bush. In poorer neighbourhoods where many African-Americans live, poll workers had to call county headquarters to verify registrations and for much of the day found the lines busy.

This is not "Bush Derangement Syndrome." It is "Bush Awareness." As Mr. Bush himself once said: "There's an old saying in Tennessee — I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again."
10.23.2008 7:08pm
cboldt (mail):
-- Still think Florida didn't disenfranchise black voters? --
.
Never did think that. I figure election activity is like most bureaucratic activity, not immune to error.
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But I think you are an obsessed crank who borders on derangement. Good to read for a laugh, but not worthy of engaging in serious debate. You hold that SoS Harris should be in jail for her performance in election 2000, etc. Simply not serious.
10.23.2008 7:16pm
Bama 1L:
cboldt, the Guarantee Clause has never been judicially enforced and was held nonjusticiable in, I think, Baker v. Carr. Maybe there is an valid Equal Protection challenge to my hypo (state lets you vote for state office despite also voting for another state office), but I can't articulate it, either.

I'm not sure what is so risible about the idea. Suppose, for instance, New York and New Jersey adopted this policy. What would actually happen is people who live in New Jersey but work in Manhattan would then have a say in New York politics--which might be fair because they contribute to the economy. If political rights make voters more invested in the community, then this could be a good thing.

If a state legislature adopted this policy, loony or not, I don't quite see how the federal constitution could be read to forbid it.
10.23.2008 7:26pm
Bruce Hayden (mail) (www):


* The punch-card machines used in African-American neighbourhoods rejected about 4 per cent of their ballots. More affluent neighbourhoods dominated by white voters tended to use a more reliable optical scanning system, which rejected only 1.4 per cent of theirs.

* In Miami-Dade County, one of three areas where the Gore campaign is contesting the election results, predominantly black precincts saw their votes thrown out at twice the rate of Hispanic precincts and nearly four times that of mostly white precincts. The New York Times estimated that Mr Gore lost almost 7,000 votes in Miami-Dade alone.

* Election officials in Miami and Tampa sent emergency supplies of laptop computers to some precincts to help poll workers to verify whether voters were registered. The computers were sent to more affluent areas that tended to vote for Mr Bush. In poorer neighbourhoods where many African-Americans live, poll workers had to call county headquarters to verify registrations and for much of the day found the lines busy.
Let's see if I understand your point here. Democratic dominated elections boards in these majority Democratic counties somehow decided to throw the election to Bush by denying their own party members the vote.

I must have been those Rovian death rays causing them to do it. No other explanation makes sense.
10.23.2008 7:45pm
cboldt (mail):
-- I'm not sure what is so risible about the idea. --
.
In the narrow abstract you posit, not so much. The situation works in reverse too, cities pass taxes that are in turn imposed on people who work there, but do not live there. You'd think all the outsiders who are affected should have a vote as to the membership in the town council or whoever sets the tax rates.
.
I've never hunted down situations where locales permitted "outsiders" to elect policy makers and enforcers. Would outsiders obtain effective control of NYC? What's the population of residents, compared with the population who is not resident, but is subject to NYC income/employment tax?
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Obviously, visitors would not have a right to participate, but what quantum of attachment should be required in order to have a voice in the local political scene?
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Usually though, a change of residence is required in order to effect political change. See migration of NY/CT/MA residents into ME, NH and VT.
10.23.2008 7:48pm
eyesay:
Democratic dominated elections boards in these majority Democratic counties somehow decided to throw the election to Bush by denying their own party members the vote.


Please supply a source for the claim that the elections boards were dominated by (loyal) Democrats.

By the way, the supposedly-Democratic Palm Beach County official who designed approved the infamous butterfly ballot ... was not a real Democrat. Theresa LePore, who approved the butterfly ballot, re-registered as "Decline to State" shortly after the 2000 election.

cboldt: If a state elections officer contrived to remove one eligible voter from the voter rolls, with the intent to interfere with the outcome of an election, don't you think this would be a crime? On what theory is removing thousands of eligible voters from the voter rolls, with the same intent, not thousands of crimes?
10.23.2008 8:09pm
Bad (mail) (www):
These standards are too sloppy, but I'm not sure how to fix them. They rest on people's future intentions, which make it easy for them to argue that they planned to stay but then later say that they changed their minds. I honestly can't think of a good alternative, however, that wouldn't also penalize people that have sincerely just moved to stay.
10.23.2008 8:56pm
Dave N (mail):
Obviously in Eyesay's world, someone isn't a "real Democrat" unless some totally unimpeachable source--I nominate Kos for that job--calls them one.

BDS at its finest.
10.23.2008 9:23pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
Slightly OT.
Military ballots being disallowed "tossed" in Fairfax County, VA.
There is a missing address on account of there's no place to put the address. Fed law requiring it changed but VA's did not. ????
Anyway, as one commenter said, we'll see how the dems' insistence on maximum voting access applies here.
10.23.2008 10:29pm
news reader:
cboldt,

Hold on a sec, please—let me get your views straight here.

• Citizens sleeping in cars: Shouldn't be allowed to vote. Moral issue for you.

• Citizens sleeping in Israel: Whole country receives public money. Vote for branch that votes them the dollars. Not moral issue.

Is that right? Fairly sums up your moral sense?
10.24.2008 1:10am
cboldt (mail):
-- Is that right? Fairly sums up your moral sense? --
.
No. It's unfair and/or imaginary because I never expressed an opinion about the absentee in Israel (and obviously, the same situation pertains to absentees in other foreign countries).
.
But I expect Democrats to be unfair, and I'll return the favor by not responding to you.
10.24.2008 8:32am
cboldt (mail):
news reader --Citizens sleeping in cars: Shouldn't be allowed to vote. Moral issue for you. --
.
Your accusation is also unfair because that is yet another misrepresentation of my comments. I'm not going to "clarify" specially for you. I suggest we engage our mutual "twit filters" toward each other, and get on with life.
10.24.2008 8:41am
Richard Aubrey (mail):
"""Slightly OT.
Military ballots being disallowed "tossed" in Fairfax County, VA.
There is a missing address on account of there's no place to put the address. Fed law requiring it changed but VA's did not. ????
Anyway, as one commenter said, we'll see how the dems' insistence on maximum voting access applies here."""

The commenter's implied answer to his own question is...not at all.
10.24.2008 10:39am
cboldt (mail):
-- There is a missing address on account of there's no place to put the address. Fed law requiring it changed but VA's did not. --
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When asked how many ballots had been rejected, Herrity responded, "Out of the 260 military federal write-in ballots received to date, only five included an address for the witness. The other 255 have been set aside for rejection."

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The instructions for the FWAB include a statement for the oath and signature at block 7 that some states require a witness or notary, and refers the voter to The Voting Assistance Guide.
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There is no space in block 7 for signature/name of a witness/notary, nor does that block indicate the possibility that a witness/notary may be required. That is, the form doesn't lead the voter, but the instructions for completing the form do (sort of - they refer to the Voting Assistance Guide)
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The part of the Voters Assistance Guide for VA says, "No notary or witness required except when a voter is unable to sign the application due to a physical disability or inability to read or write."
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Not to say that VA law doesn't recite a requirement that a witness signature/address is required, or can be misconstrued to say something to that effect.
10.24.2008 10:56am
Richard Aubrey (mail):
cboldt.
Yup. We'll see if undocumented, no-ID, illiterate, non-English-speaking folks coming by the busload get the benefit of the doubt.
My guess is...yes.
10.24.2008 11:14am
cboldt (mail):
Interesting, one set of Instructions for VA military members in Section 7 is different from the instructions at the Voting Assistance Guide, Virginia section.
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http://www.fvap.gov/ ... /fed-write-in-absentee-ballot/states/va/index.html recites:
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Block 7: Sign and date in the presence of one witness. The witness must sign and date the form.

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http://www.fvap.gov/resources/media/vagVA.pdf recites:
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No notary or witness required except when a voter is unable to sign the application due to a physical disability or inability to read or write.
10.24.2008 12:08pm
cboldt (mail):
Following the admonition to "read on," http://www.fvap.gov/resources/media/vagVA.pdf also includes this recitation:

F. Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot
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Additionally, for registered Virginia voters, the FWAB can serve simultaneously as an absentee ballot request and ballot for Federal offices as long as it is received 5 days before the election. The FWAB Declaration/Affirmation must contain the residence address where the voter is registered in Virginia, the voter's current military or overseas address, and the voter's and witness' signature and date. The witness must provide his or her printed name and address in Block 6.
10.24.2008 12:24pm
cboldt (mail):
There is this pair of statements too (appearing just like this, one above the other). I'll need to spend some time in the weeds to figure what the requirements actually are. Tough to tell from the instructions.
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II. Uniformed Services ...
C. Notary/Witness Requirements
FPCA: No notary or witness required except when a voter is unable to sign the application due to a physical disability or inability to read or write.
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Returning a Ballot: The oath on the envelope must be witnessed and the address of the witness included.
10.24.2008 12:33pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
Sounds like a serious issue, not like having no ID or known residence or something.
10.24.2008 12:59pm
cboldt (mail):
Virginia Miliary Absentee Ballot Problem Will Be Solved - Marc Ambinder

The problem is that the Fairfax County government had originally interpreted Virginia law to require all Federal Write-In Absentee ballots to have a witness' signature, printed name and address on the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot. However, the underlying Virginia law only requires this witness signature, printed name and address if they are taking advantage of the special Virginia provision that allows the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot to ALSO serve as the absentee ballot application. Because that's different from what the federal Voting Assistance Guide says, hundreds of Federal Write-In Absentee Ballots received to date were potentially going to be rejected. ...
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I've been in contact with the Fairfax County Registrar, Rokey Fulman, and he accepted my recommendation to contact the Virginia State Board of Elections to confirm this interpretation of the Virginia statute, as Sam's letter points out the Fairfax interpretation is likely incorrect. I'm happy to report that he has received guidance from the State Board of Elections that the witness name and signature requirement do indeed only apply if the FWAB is also being used simultaneously as an absentee ballot application. Therefore, so long as a Federal Post Card Application is received by election day, the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot will count, which is the normal process for military absentee ballots to be cast.
10.24.2008 1:06pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
cboldt.
Good news. After the dems sent their Three Hundred to Florida in 2000 to contest military votes, it appears that somebody decided to get pro active.
Hope every case goes this well.
IMO, this provides a precedent, informally, precluding some clown from pretending not to know until it's too late.
10.24.2008 1:55pm