Saturday, May 20, 2006

League of Women Voters Files Lawsuit Against Florida

The League of Women Voters will not register voters in Florida. They have shut down operations. The reason being is the state is the only one in the union that levees fines for applications registered after the deadline. The League of Women Voters have responded by filing a lawsuit.

As the lawsuit puts it, "the challenged law imposes civil fines of $250 for each voter registration application submitted more than 10 days after it is collected, $500 for each application submitted after any voter registration deadline, and $5,000 for each application [that for whatever reason doesn't end up being] submitted. Plaintiffs are strictly liable for these fines, even if their inability to meet the statutory deadlines results from events beyond their control, such as the destruction of applications in a hurricane."

The Florida branch of the League of Women Voters has a budget of only $80,000. These fines can lay a heavy toll on the nonprofit.

"Basically, it constricts our ability to carry out our core mission to educate voters and get them involved in the political process," said Dianne Wheatley-Giliotti.

To illustrate the laws hypocrisy, political parties are exempt from late voter application fines.

People Acting for Community Together and Brennan Center for Justice are helping the LWV with the lawsuit.


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