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Federal judge strikes down Florida exit poll law

[JURIST] A federal court in Florida ruled Tuesday that a 2005 state law [text] prohibiting exit polling within 100 feet of a voting place violates the free speech and freedom of the press guarantees of the First Amendment. US District Judge Paul Huck found in favor of the Associated Press and five television networks which had filed a lawsuit challenging the legislation. AP has more.

On Monday the same media companies sued [complaint, PDF] to overturn a similar directive [PDF] by Ohio Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell [official website] which prohibits "loitering" and "congregating" in areas surrounding a polling station as well as "hindering" or "delaying" a voter who exits the polls as being vague and confusing. Blackwell issued the rules on October 13, after US District Judge Michael Watson [official profile] struck down [AP report] a previous order prohibiting exit polling within 100 feet of an election station. A similar suit is pending in a court in Nevada, where a ruling is expected on October 31. AP has more.

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