Back in April I posted about Republicans sue to overturn City of Tucson electoral system, once again. A hearing on the motion for preliminary injunction to prevent the City of Tucson from going forward with this year’s mayor and council races using the electoral system that the Tucson City Charter has mandated since 1929 was held a couple of weeks ago.
Yesterday, to no one’s surprise, U.S. District Judge Cindy Jorgenson denied the motion for preliminary injunction ruling in favor of the City of Tucson, and once again upheld the electoral system that the Tucson City Charter has mandated since 1929. Order (.pdf):
Consideration of Plaintiffs’ claims of a denial of the right to vote under the Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution, the Privileges and Immunities Clause of the Arizona Constitution, and the Free and Equal Elections Clause of the Arizona Constitution is appropriate under a rational basis [standard of] review. The important regulatory interests of Tucson justify the reasonable, nondiscriminatory restrictions placed by Tucson upon the First and Fourteenth Amendment rights of voters.
Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED:
1. The Motion for Preliminary Injunction (Doc. 3) is DENIED.
2. Plaintiffs’ claim of a dilution of the right to vote as stated in Count II is DISMISSED.
3. Judgment is awarded in favor of Defendants and against Plaintiffs as to Plaintiffs’ claim of a denial of the right to vote under the Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution (Count I), the Privileges and Immunities Clause of the Arizona Constitution (Count III), and the Free and Equal Elections Clause of the Arizona Constitution (Count IV).
4. The Clerk of Court shall enter judgment and close its file in this matter.
The filing deadline for mayor and council candidates is next Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. Election law attorney Rick Hasen has identified a consistent theme in court actions, which he calls the “Purcell principle” after the 2006 Supreme Court case Purcell v. Gonzalez: Lower courts should be very reluctant to change the rules just before an election, because of the risk of voter confusion and chaos for election officials. How to Predict a Voting Rights Decision. This is a guiding principle in any election law appeal.
The 2015 A Hero’s Salute will be held at the Pima Air & Space Museum
May 25th at 3:00PM
6000 E Valencia Rd, Tucson, AZ 85706
Ticket price includes admission to the A Hero’s Salute event AND Pima Air and Space Museum
A HERO’S SALUTE
Join us as Arts Express honors the brave men and women from Southern Arizona who have served, as well as those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. This uplifting and inspirational Memorial Day tribute recognizes our military,first responders, public servants, and all those who have placed themselves before others.
The program will feature the Arts Express Singers and Brass Quintet, along with inspirational speakers. Conducted by Dr. David Ashcraft, Co-Artistic Director of Arts Express.
More info and to buy tickets: http://www.arts-express.org/a-heros-salute/
Congress will agree to a short-term extension of highway funding before it expires at the end of the month, kicking the can down the road again, so to speak.
It is the 33rd short-term extension in recent years. The New York Times suggests that this will set up an epic battle over infrastructure later this summer; doubtful.
Until Tea-Publicans agree that we need to raise taxes to pay for long overdue infrastructure improvements — something they are religiously opposed to — their tactic of robbing Peter to pay Paul (revenue neutral budgeting) will simply pit one interest against another, leading to gridlock. House Approves Short-Term Financing for Highways:
The House on Tuesday approved a two-month extension of funding for transportation projects, setting up what could be a defining fight over money for highways and other infrastructure this summer after years of stopgap measures.
The extension, which passed in a 387-to-35 vote with one member voting present, would maintain funding for the Highway Trust Fund through July 31. The bill now goes to the Senate, which has just two legislative days left before a scheduled weeklong Memorial Day recess. The transportation program’s spending authority is set to expire during that break, on May 31.