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2008 Election: Colorado Voting Rights Presented by: Ryan R. Call, Legal Counsel, Colorado Republican Party Martha M. Tierney, Partner, Kelly Garnsey Hubbell.

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Presentation on theme: "2008 Election: Colorado Voting Rights Presented by: Ryan R. Call, Legal Counsel, Colorado Republican Party Martha M. Tierney, Partner, Kelly Garnsey Hubbell."— Presentation transcript:

1 2008 Election: Colorado Voting Rights Presented by: Ryan R. Call, Legal Counsel, Colorado Republican Party Martha M. Tierney, Partner, Kelly Garnsey Hubbell + Lass, LLC John S. Zakhem, Partner, Zakhem Atherton, LLC

2 Voter Registration: Qualification for registration: , CRS 18 years of age or older Citizen of the United States Resident of the state and the precinct in which the person intends to register 30 days prior to the election October 6, 2008 = Final day to Register to Vote for 2008 General Election Students permitted to vote; inmates serving a sentence for a felony and parolees may not vote ( , CRS)

3 Voter Registration:

4 Registration by Mail, (1.5), CRS First-time voters who register by mail, and who have not registered to vote in the county or state, must: Submit with the voter registration form a copy of an approved form of ID ( (19.5), CRS), the elector’s drivers license number (or dept. of revenue ID card number), OR the last four digits of the elector’s social security number.

5 Voter Registration: Homeless Voters, (a)(II), CRS The mailing address of a homeless individual shall constitute that individual’s residence for purposes of registering or voting. The mailing address of a homeless individual may include a shelter, a homeless service provider, or a private residence, but may not include a post office box or general delivery at a post office. See also SOS Election Rule 2.9, defining a “home base” to also include “a park, a campground, a vacant lot, a business address, or any other physical location.”

6 Voter Registration: Voter Registration Drives, , CRS Voter Registration Drive (VRD) sponsor registration required, including mandatory training. Violations and penalties defined, including civil penalties of: $500 for failing to register and complete training prior to conducting a VRD. $50 per day for willfully failing to deliver a voter reg. form within 15 days, or within the registration deadline Other penalties apply, up to $5000

7 ID Required for Voting in Person: A valid Colorado driver’s license. A valid identification card issued by the Dept. of Revenue. A valid U.S. passport. A valid employee photo ID card issued by a federal, state, or local government agency. A valid pilot’s license issued by the FAA. A valid U.S. military identification photo ID.

8 ID Required for Voting in Person: A copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows the name and address of the elector. A valid Medicare or Medicaid card issued by the US heath care financing administration. Certified copy of a birth certificate. Certified documentation of naturalization. A valid student identification card with a photograph of the eligible elector issued by an institution of higher education in Colorado, as defined by (5), CRS.

9 Challenges: Challenge of illegal or fraudulent registration, , CRS Written challenge and supporting evidence must be filed no later than 60 days before any election.

10 Challenges: Voter Challenges, to 210, CRS Challenges may be made by written oath, attesting: It is know by you that the person does not live in or is not properly registered to vote as required by Colorado law. It is known by you that the person is a convicted felon serving a sentence or is on parole. It is known by you that the voter failed to show the proper identification required by Colorado law. You must give the written challenge form to the election judge before the challenged elector votes.

11 Challenges: Challenge questions and oath of challenged elector, , 204, CRS If the elector is challenged as not eligible, the election judge will ask a series of questions as may be necessary to test the person’s qualifications as an eligible elector. After the person has taken an oath or affirmation regarding eligibility, a regular ballot shall be given to the voter and the election judge shall write “sworn” on the pollbook.

12 Challenges: Voter Challenges, , CRS Challenges of ballots cast by mail, , CRS. Challenges of provisional ballots, , CRS. Challenges are delivered to the district attorney, and a copy of the challenge is delivered to the elector if the challenge is made when the elector is not present.

13 Election Offenses: Electioneering, , CRS No person shall do any electioneering on the day of any election within any polling place or in any public street or room in any public manner within 100 feet of any building in which a polling place is located. “Electioneering” includes campaigning for or against any candidate who is on the ballot or any ballot issue or ballot question that is on the ballot. Violation is a misdemeanor, penalty under CRS

14 Election Offenses: Intimidation, , CRS It is unlawful for any person directly or indirectly…to impede, prevent, or otherwise interfere with the free exercise of the elective franchise of any elector, or to compel, induce, or prevail upon any elector either to give or refrain from giving his vote at any election provided by law. Violation is a misdemeanor, penalty under CRS

15 Election Offenses: Interference with election official, , CRS Interfering with watcher, , CRS Tampering with notices, supplies, registration lists, pollbooks, voting equipment, , 703, 708, CRS

16 Election Offenses: Personating an elector, , CRS Voting in wrong precinct, , CRS Voting more than once, , CRS Liquor in or near polling place, , CRS Various other election offices (Title 1, Art. 13, Colorado Revised Statues)

17 Pollwatchers: Appointment of Watchers, , CRS Each participating political party whose candidate is on the ballot…shall be entitled to have no more than one watcher at any one time in each precinct polling place in the county and at each place where votes are counted. The county party chair shall certify the names of one or more persons selected as watchers. To the extent possible, the county party chair shall submit the names by the close of business on the Friday immediately preceding the election.

18 Pollwatchers: If selected by a political party chairperson…the watcher shall be affiliated with that political party or unaffiliated. SOS Rule A designated watcher need not be a resident of the county he or she is designated as long as he or she is an eligible elector in the State of Colorado. SOS Rule Political party attorneys are not allowed in the polling place unless they are duly appointed as watchers. SOS Rule 8.3 Watchers are not allowed to have cell phones, cameras, recording devices, laptops or PDAs (Palm Pilot, Blackberry, etc.) in the polling place. SOS Rule 8.4

19 Pollwatchers: Requirements of Watchers, , CRS Watchers shall take an oath administered by the election judge that they are registered electors, that their name has been submitted to the designated election official as a watcher, and that they will not make know to anyone the result of counting votes until the polls have closed.

20 Pollwatchers: Pursuant to , CRS, each watcher shall have the right: To maintain a list of eligible electors who have voted, To witness and verify each step in the conduct of the election from prior to the opening of polls through the completion of the county and announcement of the results, To challenge ineligible electors, and To assist in the correction of discrepancies.

21 Provisional Ballots: Provisional Ballots – entitlement to vote, , et seq. Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA), 42 USC 15301, et seq. No elector shall be denied the right to cast a provisional ballot in any election.

22 Provisional Ballots: Provisional Ballots – entitlement to vote, , et seq. A voter claiming to be properly registered but whose qualification or entitlement cannot be immediately established may cast a provisional ballot. A voter who has applied for a mail-in ballot but spoils it or otherwise does not cast it, the voter may cast a provisional ballot at the polling place, vote center, or early vote polling place if the elector affirms under oath that the voter has not and will not cast the mail-in ballot.

23 Provisional Ballots: Verification of Provisional Ballots, , CRS Counting of Provisional Ballots, , CRS If the designated election official verifies that an elector who cast a provisional ballot is eligible to vote, the provisional ballot shall be counted. If the elector’s registration cannot be verified, the ballot shall not be counted.

24 Election-Related Litigation: Appointment and Access of Watchers Electioneering in the Polling Places Unlawful Assistance in the Polling Place Polling Place Hours of Operation Procedures for confirming eligibility and counting mail ballots Voting machine-related injunctive relief (fraud, malfunction, motion to enforce election code) ? ? ?

25 Questions and Comments:


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