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Supreme Court Strikes Down State Law Barring ‘Political’ Apparel In Polling Places

Supreme Court Strikes Down State Law Barring ‘Political’ Apparel In Polling Places
June 14, 2018 Elijah James Logan

The U.S. Supreme Court, in an extremely narrow opinion, on Thursday struck down Minnesota’s law that bars voters inside a polling place from wearing political badges, buttons and other insignia. The court said that while the law serves a permissible objective, the line that the state drew in interpreting the word political was so broad as to be unreasonable. The court’s 7-2 vote, however, strongly upheld the notion that a polling place can be regulated by a state to protect voters in the “weighty civic act of casting a ballot.” While every state in the country has a law similar to Minnesota, Minnesota’s is the strictest in how it was interpreted by state officials, and the court said state officials’ interpretation simply went too far. “The unmoored use of the term ‘political’ in the Minnesota law, combined with haphazard interpretations the State has provided in official guidance and representations to this Court, cause Minnesota’s restriction to fail this test” of reasonableness, the

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