ILNews

SCOTUS sets Indiana voter ID arguments

Michael W. Hoskins
January 1, 2007
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The Supreme Court of the United States will consider the constitutionality of Indiana's voter identification law in early 2008.

A calendar published this morning puts the consolidated Hoosier cases on the high court's docket for 10 a.m., Jan. 9. The cases are Crawford v. Marion County Election Board (07-21) and Indiana Democratic Party v. Rokita (07-25).

Both challenge the law that took effect July 2005. The 7th Circuit had previously affirmed a District judge's ruling that the law wasn't unconstitutional. Rep. William Crawford, D-Indianapolis, sued Secretary of State Todd Rokita and the Marion County Election Board, and the ACLU-Indiana had sued on behalf of those who could be impacted by the law, possibly to the extent of not voting.

Nearly two dozen amicus briefs against the law have been filed this week, representing more than 81 separate groups or individuals in the 23 briefs. The deadline for those parties supporting the law is early December. Amici parties include the League of Women Voters of Indiana and Indianapolis as the only brief to come out of the Hoosier state. Others include a brief from former and current Secretaries of State, who argue that photo ID laws such as this aren't needed to prevent fraud, and dozens of legal scholars voicing their thoughts about the topic. Only one brief is neutral: that of professor Erwin Chemerinsky, a Duke University School of Law professor who's been appointed as founding dean of the University of California-Irvine Donald Bren School of Law for 2009. All of the merit and amicus briefs can be found online at http://www.supremecourtus.gov/meritsbriefs/meritsbriefs.html.
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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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