COVID-19 Special Coverage
ACLU challenges Kentucky voting requirements
© WikiMedia (Tom Arthur)
ACLU challenges Kentucky voting requirements

Groups in Kentucky brought a federal lawsuit Thursday over Kentucky’s failure to adapt voting regulations in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The lawsuit was filed by American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Kentucky, the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and Covington & Burling, on behalf of the League of Women Voters of Kentucky, the Louisville Urban League, the Kentucky State Conference of the NAACP and several individuals, to vindicate their rights under the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the US Constitution.

The groups allege that the state failed to extend the critical protections to the general election. Specifically, the protections include (a) eliminating the notarization requirement for medical emergency absentee ballot applications,(b) extending the absentee ballot deadline to include ballots postmarked by Election Day and received by the Saturday following the election, and (c) implementing new regulations to provide voters with notice and an opportunity to cure any absentee ballot that is rejected based on signature verification issues.

The groups also asked the court to declare that Kentucky’s enforcement of the photo ID Law violates the fundamental right to vote under the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the US Constitution while the risk of community transmission of COVID-19 continues to threaten the health and safety of Kentucky voters.

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