Voting Rights Cases and Actions
CLC is suing to suspend enforcement of Minnesota’s law requiring a third-party witness signature for voting by mail. This law threatens Minnesotans’ right to vote safely during the COVID-19 pandemic and imposes irrational restrictions on who can serve as a witness.
CLC is challenging New Jersey’s policy of rejecting mail-in ballots under an error-prone signature verification process without first informing voters there is a problem with their ballot or giving them an opportunity to fix it and have their vote count.
CLC is challenging Texas’s strict limitations on who can vote absentee even during the pendency of the COVID-19 crisis, which force voters to choose between jeopardizing their health by voting in person or not voting at all.
Most states restore the right to vote to people after they complete their sentences. In fact, up to 17 million Americans with past convictions can vote right now - they just don't know it because felony disenfranchisement laws in every state can be confusing. CLC launched a website, RestoreYourVote.org, and an on-the-ground campaign to help people with past convictions in all 50 states know their rights.
Texas instituted a new voter purge program targeting newly naturalized citizens. This was a discriminatory and unconstitutional burden on the right to vote, violating the 1st and 14th Amendments. On behalf of our clients, naturalized Texan Julie Hilberg and the organization LULAC, CLC successfully sued to block the law.
In November 2018, voters in Florida passed a constitutional amendment automatically restoring voting rights to people with felony convictions. In response, the state legislature passed a bill that conditions the right to vote on wealth — people with the financial means to pay fines and fees from a conviction have their rights restored, while those without means remain disenfranchised. CLC challenged the law in court, and in October 2019, a U.S. District Court ruled the law unconstitutional.
When the Tennessee legislature passed a law that would have imposed substantial penalties on groups that foster political participation through voter registration efforts, CLC sued on behalf of civic participation groups across the state. In September 2019, a federal court blocked the law, recognizing that it struck at the heart of free speech rights and imposed needless and burdensome regulations.