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Volume 6 Issue 11/ March 15, 2010
|The Official Newsletter of the New York
Democratic Lawyers Council
Vol 6, Iss 11 March 15, 2010
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REMEMBER, if you have a friend or
colleague who would benefit from reading Legal Briefs please send us
their e-mail address and we will be happy to include them in our weekly
Howard Leib, Editor
Committee Meeting Regular March Steering Committee
meeting will take place Thursday, March 25th at 7PM at Dewey and
Leboeuf. All are welcome. Please RSVP to email@example.com
/ Lower Hudson Valley Regional Meeting The
Westchester/Lower Hudson Valley Chapter will hold a Regional Meeting at
McCarthy Fingar on Friday, March 26th from 7:30 am to 9 am. The
business portion of the meeting shall begin at 8 am. All members within
our region of Columbia, Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland and
Westchester Counties are invited to participate in person or by
telephone. RSVP to Frank Streng firstname.lastname@example.org for in-person attendance
or to participate by conference call.
An Evening for Election Integrity!
With Mark Ritchie, Minnesota's Secretary of
Monday, April 12
Anne Hess and Craig Kaplan
Appleton*Caron Atlas*Allison Barlow*Marjorie Fine*Frances Fox-Piven*
Anne Hess and Craig Kaplan*Allen Hunter and Linda Gordon* Riva Krut and
Harris Gleckman*Ruth Katz*Sandra Levinson* Jaykumar Menon*Leah
Margulies*Marion Nestle*Anita Nager* Miles Rapoport*Donna Schaper and
*Deborah Stern* Suggested Contributions
Benefactor ~ $250 Friend ~ $100 Advocate
Contributions of any size
Maximum Contribution for 2010 is $500/person or
From overseeing the Franken vs. Coleman US Senate
recount to being named Most Valuable State Official of the Year by The
Nationmagazine for his civic engagement leadership, Mark Ritchie's first
three years in office have demonstrated how important it is to have
people of integrity in the Office of the Secretary of State. In keeping
with his pledge to be a "Champion for Democracy," Ritchie has been a
leader in nationwide efforts to expanded voter participation and to
ensure the integrity of the election process.
Beyond the national headlines, Mark Ritchie has been an
innovator in finding ways to make voting more accessible to citizens who
have historically faced unnecessary barriers-including students,
seniors, people with disabilities, soldiers and others serving overseas.
Ritchie is also active in the national movement to get big money out of
judicial elections - an issue that has become a high priority for Mark
due to the recent Supreme Court ruling striking down limits on corporate
money in elections.
Ritchie is running for re-election as
Minnesota's Secretary of State in 2010.
Please RSVP for this event
or call 507-351-0961.
To Donate online, visit www.markritchie2010.org
and click on
MISSISSIPPI - GOPERS KEEP TRYING TO BLOCK VOTERS - With a new election season rapidly approaching, GOPer
operatives are once again stepping up efforts to enact restrictive Voter
ID bills. In Mississippi, GOPers have obtained enough signatures to
put a measure on the ballot that would require voters to show government
issued picture ID in order to vote. The rationale is, of course, to
prevent voter fraud, although there is no substantial reported instances
of voter fraud to prevent.
MINNESOTA - MAKING ABSENTEE VOTING FAIRER
- The Minnesota House has passed a bill designed to improve absentee
balloting. If the bill passes the Senate and is signed into law
election officials would bew required to mail a new ballot to any voters
whose ballot was rejected and explain why the ballot was invalid, up
until five days before an election. With the five day period, officials
would have to call or e-mail voters so they could cast ballots in
ALASKA - ONCE IS ALL IT TAKES- A bill has been
introduced in Alaska which would allow eligible voters to sign up once
and receive absentee ballots each year. GOPer representitives are, of
course, challenging the proposal.
MANAGING ATTORNEY - VOTING SECTION - US
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
The U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division (http://www.justice.gov/crt/
seeking a managing attorney to lead the Voting Section (http://www.justice.gov/crt/
enforcing the Voting Rights Act of 1965; the National Voter Registration
Act of 1993; the Voting Accessibility for the Elderly and Handicapped
Act; the Help America Vote Act of 2002; the Uniformed and Oversees
Citizens Absentee Voting Act; and other statutory provisions for
safeguarding citizens' right to vote. The Section brings lawsuits
against states, counties, cities, and other jurisdictions; monitors
local elections; and reviews submissions for compliance with Section 5
of the Voting Rights Act. The position is based in Washington, DC.
details and application links are found at http://jobview.usajobs.gov/
E-mail your answer to DemEsqNYC@aol.com by the end of business on
Thursday. Put Brain Teaser in the subject line. We will print the names
of those people who get the answer right in our next issue.
THIS WEEK'S QUESTION
With Eric Massa in the news this
week, can you remember who held that Congressional seat before Massa?
LAST WEEK'S QUESTION
your memory as we bask in last night's Academy Awards. At then
candidate Obama's request, this Oscar winner and American Idol finalist
sang the national anthem on the last day of the Democratic Convention in
2008. Who was the singer?
AND THE ANSWER IS: Jennifer Hudson
We had correct answers from Jennifer Bame, Joe Bookman, David Forestier,
Alan Goldston, Chip Hoagland, Douglas A.
Kellner, Patrick Michael McKenna. Jeanne Murphy, Avril Roberts, Fred C.
Russcol, Myra Saul, Helene Simon, Julie Vulpescu and AAronda Watson
Congrats to you all.
The New York Democratic Lawyers Council
The New York Democratic Lawyers Council (NYDLC) is a
group of Democratic lawyers and voting rights activists, affiliated with
the National Lawyers Council of the Democratic National Committee,
volunteering their legal skills to strengthen the democratic process. We
work to ensure that every eligible citizen is allowed to vote and that
every vote cast in every election is counted. The NYDLC was formed out
of a concern that voting rights are increasingly under attack in our
country and an understanding that now is the time to put the skills of
Democratic attorneys to work to ensure that every citizen's right to
vote will be upheld in future elections. Our activities include
advocating for better laws and regulations and initiating litigation
when necessary to guarantee the fairness of and the widest participation
in the U.S. electoral process.
Democratic Lawyers Council was founded by attorneys who have served on
the front line of election law for the Democratic Party in numerous
elections, including most recently, the 2000 and 2004 presidential
elections. The lesson learned from the recount debacle was that
post-election day litigation will hardly ever fix any election
injustice. Given that, many of the recount lawyers, particularly those
based in Florida, engineered a comprehensive voter protection program to
confront and deal with voter and election issues before Election Day.
One aspect of this effort was the recruitment of 3200 lawyers who, after
receiving specialized election law and procedures training, worked
inside the polls in key precincts in Florida on Election Day to assure
that every citizen who showed up to vote, was able to do so.
Our mission statement is simple:
We are a coalition of lawyers and others
dedicated to fostering universal participation and trust in the
electoral process by ensuring that:
All eligible persons can register to vote easily,
All registered voters are able to vote simply, fairly,
and without intimidation, and
All votes are counted and all voting systems are open
We encourage you to send us an
email if you would like more information or are interested in becoming a
part of our organization.
The NYDLC is a volunteer organization,
functioning through the donated time and enthusiasm of our members. We
have openings for people to take on specific tasks within the NYDLC, on a
local, state and national level. Check out our Help Wanted section to
see if there is a task you want to take on to help the NYDLC, your party
and your country.
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