State House Sound Bites

Capitol reporter Katie Meyer covers Pennsylvania politics and issues at the Pennsylvania state capitol.

The State House Sound Bites Podcast is now called State of the State and is a part of PA Post, a digital-first, citizen-focused news organization to hold Pennsylvania’s government accountable to its citizens.

Lawyers ask judge to make faster ruling on state's voter ID outreach efforts

Written by Mary Wilson, Former Capitol Bureau Chief | Oct 24, 2012 6:18 PM
Thumbnail image for Voter-Registration-Identification-card.jpg

A state judge is giving the commonwealth until next Tuesday to respond to a petition asking that the commonwealth correct misleading messages about voter ID. The petition’s authors are asking for an earlier deadline.

Last week, the same people who brought you the protracted legal challenge to the voter ID law took issue with the state again.

Lawyers led by the ACLU of Pennsylvania asked a judge to order the state to stop misleading ads and correct false messages to make sure voters know they don’t need photo ID to vote in November.

They specifically mention outdated mailings and misleading robocalls planned for the “very near future.”

The judge has given the state a chance to respond, with its deadline one week before Election Day. The ACLU-PA’s legal director, Vic Walczak, said that wouldn’t allow enough time to correct misinformation.

“We filed our petition five days ago and this gives the commonwealth another six days to respond,” he said. “Frankly, it’s too late to repair the harm that is being done by the false information being sent out by the commonwealth.”

His group filed another motion asking the court to reconsider the deadline for the commonwealth’s response, bumping it up to Thursday of this week.

Earlier this month, the voter ID law was partially blocked, meaning voters won’t have to show photo ID in November.

State Department spokesman Ron Ruman said Tuesday that commonwealth officials believe they’ve done everything to comply with that ruling, including deciding not to issue the robocalls referred to in the ACLU’s motion.

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