The conservative Civitas Institute filed a motion in federal court Wednesday seeking an “expedited review” of its lawsuit challenging votes cast using same-day registration.
The lawsuit, filed Monday, addresses the more than 90,000 people who registered to vote and voted on the same day prior to the Nov. 8 general election.
Civitas says in the lawsuit that there’s not enough time between their registration and the State Board of Elections counting their ballots for the local county boards of election to verify applicants’ addresses. County boards mail new applicants notices to verify their addresses; if the notices are sent back as “undeliverable,” the voters’ registrations aren’t valid. The process takes up to 30 days if the boards act promptly, the lawsuit says.
The state has had same-day registration since 2007. The legislature had sought to eliminate the option, but it was restored when a federal court overturned the state’s voter ID law earlier this year.
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Voters using same-day registration to cast ballots during early voting must provide a photo identification or other proof of residency – such as a utility bill showing a current address.
Civitas President Francis De Luca said Wednesday’s motion aims to speed up legal action on the lawsuit, which he wants to see resolved before the State Board of Elections certifies election results. But with the Thanksgiving holiday, De Luca said he expects that Monday will be the earliest a judge might hear the lawsuit.
“I’m pretty confident that we will have our hearing” before the election would be finalized with the same-day registration ballots, he said.