Supreme Court OKs Ohio Voter Purge Law

Bryan Woolston via ZUMA

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Earlier this year I was pondering whether Ohio’s voter removal law was legal. Referring to section (d) of the 1993 motor voter law, I said:

The Ohio program follows this to the letter.

Today the Supreme Court ruled that:

Ohio’s removal process follows subsection (d) to the letter.

And thus Ohio’s program for maintaining voter rolls is legal. Apparently I’m getting better at this Supreme Court prediction stuff! In any case, I’m sticking with my original view: the Ohio law pushes right to the edge of what’s legal under federal law, but it doesn’t go beyond. It’s legal and, what’s more, probably not that big a deal. Today’s court opinion does not appear to be an expansive new grant of power to purge unwanted voters, nor does it suggest that the motor voter law itself is problematic. The ruling simply says that if you follow the law precisely, then you can purge voters from the rolls.

Aside from the fact that I’d like to do away with voter registration entirely, none of this strikes me as either unreasonable or likely to change things significantly.


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It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

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