April 3, 2020 •

Lawsuit Challenges New Ohio Presidential, State Primary Election Date and Procedures

A lawsuit has been filed challenging the new Ohio presidential and state primary election date and procedures. The lawsuit challenges House Bill 197, which included a provision to extend absentee balloting until April 28 for the presidential and state primary […]

A lawsuit has been filed challenging the new Ohio presidential and state primary election date and procedures.

The lawsuit challenges House Bill 197, which included a provision to extend absentee balloting until April 28 for the presidential and state primary elections.

In response to COVID-19, the state’s Health Department postponed in-person voting originally scheduled for March 17.

The lawsuit seeks to delay the election date further.

Additionally registered voters who have not cast a ballot in the election will have an absentee ballot mailed to them.

The lawsuit would also allow voters who do not receive a ballot in time to vote at board of elections.

Finally it would set the voter registration date 30 days prior to the primary date, as required by federal law.

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April 3, 2020 •

Justices Decline Challenge to Seattle Democracy Vouchers

United States Supreme Court Building

The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear a challenge to Seattle’s first-in-the-nation democracy voucher program for public financing of political campaigns. The court denied the challenge brought by two local property owners arguing the program violated the First Amendment by forcing them, […]

The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear a challenge to Seattle’s first-in-the-nation democracy voucher program for public financing of political campaigns.

The court denied the challenge brought by two local property owners arguing the program violated the First Amendment by forcing them, through their tax dollars, to support candidates they don’t like.

In 2015, Seattle voters decided to tax themselves $3 million a year in order to receive four $25 vouchers they can donate to participating candidates in city elections.

The state Supreme Court unanimously upheld the voucher program last year.

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April 3, 2020 •

South Carolina Legislature Set to Meet on April 8

South Carolina Capitol Building

The South Carolina Legislature is set to return on April 8 for a single day. The session is being called to consider a continuing resolution concerning state funding. Additionally they will consider a resolution allowing the Legislature to adjourn sine […]

The South Carolina Legislature is set to return on April 8 for a single day.

The session is being called to consider a continuing resolution concerning state funding.

Additionally they will consider a resolution allowing the Legislature to adjourn sine die.

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April 3, 2020 •

North Carolina Secretary of State to Allow Late Filing of First Quarter Reports

North Carolina State Legislative Building

Secretary of State Elaine F. Marshall has announced a grace period to file the first quarter lobbyist and principal reports due April 22. This comes in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the importance of social distancing, Penalties for failure […]

Secretary of State Elaine F. Marshall has announced a grace period to file the first quarter lobbyist and principal reports due April 22.

This comes in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the importance of social distancing,

Penalties for failure to timely file will not be levied if report is filed on or before July 22; is accompanied by a sworn and notarized statement that a notary could not be obtained prior to the date the report was filed; and all other reports due by July 22 are timely filed.

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April 3, 2020 •

Idaho’s May Primary Election Won’t Be Delayed, Deadline for Absentee Ballots Pushed Back

Idaho Capitol Building - JSquish

Idaho Gov. Brad Little won’t delay the May 19 primary election, but the election will now be all-absentee due to the risk from coronavirus. Secretary of State Lawerence Denney has extended the deadline to submit absentee ballots to June 2. […]

Idaho Gov. Brad Little won’t delay the May 19 primary election, but the election will now be all-absentee due to the risk from coronavirus.

Secretary of State Lawerence Denney has extended the deadline to submit absentee ballots to June 2.

Idahoans will be able register to vote and request an absentee ballot up until 8 p.m. on May 19.

The extension pushes back voters’ deadline to submit ballots to county clerks to 8 p.m. on June 2.

Normally that deadline would have been 8 p.m. May 19.

The Office of the Secretary of State will be sending out absentee ballot requests to every registered voter who has not already requested one.

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April 2, 2020 •

Mississippi Postpones House District 88 Special Election

Mississippi State Capitol - by Ken Lund

Gov. Tate Reeves has ordered the special election for House District 88 set for April 21 be postponed until June 23. The seat was vacated when Ramona Blackledge resigned in January. Due to the House leadership ruling members could not […]

Gov. Tate Reeves has ordered the special election for House District 88 set for April 21 be postponed until June 23.

The seat was vacated when Ramona Blackledge resigned in January.

Due to the House leadership ruling members could not collect legislative pay while also receiving state retirement funds.

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April 2, 2020 •

West Virginia Postpones Primary until June 9

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice

On April 1, Gov. Jim Justice issued an executive order postponing the state’s primary election scheduled from May 12 until June 9 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The order also suspends the rules and regulations regarding municipal elections allowing those […]

On April 1, Gov. Jim Justice issued an executive order postponing the state’s primary election scheduled from May 12 until June 9 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The order also suspends the rules and regulations regarding municipal elections allowing those elections to be rescheduled as necessary.

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April 2, 2020 •

Ruling Expected Soon In Case Seeking To Delay Wisconsin Election

Wisconsin State Capitol Building

Although many states have postponed elections, as of April 1, Wisconsin plans to proceed with its primary on April 7 as planned despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Several lawsuits were filed over the election. The Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled in favor […]

Although many states have postponed elections, as of April 1, Wisconsin plans to proceed with its primary on April 7 as planned despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Several lawsuits were filed over the election.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Republican Party of Wisconsin

This will order a Dane County election official to change his guidance related to absentee voting and require strict compliance with voter identification laws.

Another federal lawsuit related to the election is still awaiting a verdict.

Formerly three separate cases, Federal Judge William Conley combined the three cases into a single case and heard arguments today.

A ruling in that case could happen any time.

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April 2, 2020 •

Wyoming Democrats Change Mail-In Date for Caucus

Wyoming Capitol - By Bradlyons - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

The Democratic Party has canceled all county conventions and the in-person portion of its upcoming caucus over increasing concerns around the coronavirus outbreak. All Wyoming Democrats registered by March 20 were automatically sent a ballot in the mail, to the […]

The Democratic Party has canceled all county conventions and the in-person portion of its upcoming caucus over increasing concerns around the coronavirus outbreak.

All Wyoming Democrats registered by March 20 were automatically sent a ballot in the mail, to the address on their voter registration.

The deadline to request a replacement ballot was March 31.

Ballots must be mailed back to the Wyoming Democratic Party (postage paid envelope is included) and received by April 17.

Ballots received after April 17 will not be tabulated.

Caucus results will be released as soon as possible.

Counties will hold delegate elections and conventions electronically, no later than May 24.

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April 2, 2020 •

Ohio Ethics Commission Extends Financial Disclosure Statement Deadline

Ohio Statehouse

The Ohio Ethics Commission has extended the financial disclosure statement deadline to July 15 for public officials required to file. The general filing deadline applying to most filers was previously May 15. Paul M. Nick, Executive Director of the Commission, […]

The Ohio Ethics Commission has extended the financial disclosure statement deadline to July 15 for public officials required to file.

The general filing deadline applying to most filers was previously May 15.

Paul M. Nick, Executive Director of the Commission, stated the extension was to give filers adequate time to compile and file statements following the extended deadline of July 15 for federal and state tax returns in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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April 2, 2020 •

Hawaii Postpones Presidential Primary Election

The Democratic Party of Hawaii announced the Democrat presidential primary election will take place on May 22 via mail-in ballots. The election had originally been scheduled for April 4, but in-person voting was cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns. To accommodate […]

The Democratic Party of Hawaii announced the Democrat presidential primary election will take place on May 22 via mail-in ballots.

The election had originally been scheduled for April 4, but in-person voting was cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns.

To accommodate those who planned to vote in person, the party won’t count the ballots until late May to allow time for the extra round of ballots to be mailed, filled out, and returned.

Voters have until April 4 to register with the party and request a ballot.

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April 2, 2020 •

Thursday’s LobbyComply News Roundup

Campaign Finance National: “Biden Faces a Cash Gap with Trump. He Has to Close It Virtually.” by Shane Goldmacher (NewYork Times) for Salt Lake Tribune California: “Watchdog to Review Rules Letting California Politicians Raise Money for Charity” by Laurel Rosenhall […]

Campaign Finance

National: “Biden Faces a Cash Gap with Trump. He Has to Close It Virtually.” by Shane Goldmacher (NewYork Times) for Salt Lake Tribune

California: “Watchdog to Review Rules Letting California Politicians Raise Money for Charity” by Laurel Rosenhall for Calmatters

Elections

National: “Campaigning in the Age of Pandemic: Biden and Sanders as amateur video hosts” by Annie Linskey and Matt Viser (Associated Press) for MSN

Wisconsin: “Wisconsin Goes It Alone, Holding Elections Next Week Amid Fears of Infection and Voting Chaos” by Amy Gardner for Washington Post

Ethics

California: “‘They’re All Tainted by It.’ Federal Corruption Cases Deal New Blow to Trust in City Hall” by David Zahniser and Emily Alpert Reyes (Los Angeles Times) for Yahoo News

Michigan: “Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith Resigns Amid Criminal Charges Against Him” by Christina Hall for Detroit Free Press

Lobbying

Canada: “New B.C. Lobbying Laws Come into Force in May” by Haley Woodin for Business in Vancouver

Illinois: “Pandemic Derails Illinois’ Lobbying Reform Commission Ahead of Key Deadline” by Greg Bishop for The Center Square

New York: “Cuomo Pulls Back on Proposed Donor Disclosures for Nonprofits” by Kay Dervishi for City and State

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April 1, 2020 •

FEC Adjusts Some Reporting Dates for Postponed Elections

In response to several states postponing congressional and presidential primary elections to limit exposure to the COVID-19 virus, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) has been updating some of the campaign finance report due dates related to those elections.   The […]

In response to several states postponing congressional and presidential primary elections to limit exposure to the COVID-19 virus, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) has been updating some of the campaign finance report due dates related to those elections.

 

The law requires many reports, such as pre-election reports, electioneering communications reports, and reports accounting for independent expenditures, base their due date and their covered periods upon the actual date of the election.

 

The FEC will adjust the deadlines for the relevant reports related to postponed elections.

Specifically, the FEC has directed that if a state postpones its election after the deadline for the applicable pre-election report, participating committees must file an additional pre-election report due 12 days before the new election date.

Otherwise, committees need only file the pre-election report for the new election date.

 

A political campaign affected by a postponement may continue to accept contributions until the date of the rescheduled election.

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April 1, 2020 •

South Dakota Adjourns After Postponing Election

South Dakota Capitol Building

South Dakota Capitol Building

The Legislature adjourned on March 30 after holding its first electronic voting day for the last scheduled day of the 2020 session. This was held to consider bills vetoed by Gov. Kristi Noem and several new bills related to the […]

The Legislature adjourned on March 30 after holding its first electronic voting day for the last scheduled day of the 2020 session.

This was held to consider bills vetoed by Gov. Kristi Noem and several new bills related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Legislature passed 9 of the 11 bills Noem requested to aid the state in battling the COVID-19 virus.

This is including the one that postponed elections.

House Bill 1298 postpones any election scheduled to be held from April 14 through May 26.

The bill requires the governing body of the political subdivision holding the election to choose any Tuesday in June as the alternate election date.

It also requires the absentee voting period to extend through 5:00 p.m. local time the day before the new election date.

A special session is tentatively planned for June to address lingering budget concerns caused by the pandemic.

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