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December 23, 2016

New York Law Journal

By: Jerry H. Goldfeder

The most significant election-law-related events revolved around the presidential election. Several months ago we published an article about the ins and outs of the nominating process and the workings of the electoral college ("Electing the President: Rules and Laws," NYLJ, April 18, 2016), yet we would have been hard-pressed to predict that millions of Americans would become so familiar with the process. Think of how many office-cooler discussions of "faithless electors" have occurred in the last several weeks. That said, the electors have met, and, predictably, sufficient numbers have followed the wishes of voters in their respective states to elect Donald Trump president. The post-election recounts, and their inevitable concomitant lawsuits, though interesting, seem now like a sideshow unworthy of too much attention.

The past 12 months remain prologue, however, for the several voting rights cases brought against restrictive laws in North Carolina and Texas, to name but two (see, e.g. "Federal Appeals Court Strikes Down North Carolina Voter ID Requirement," N.Y. Times, July 29, 2016; "Federal Court Rules Texas’ ID Law Violates Voting Rights Act," N.Y. Times, July 20, 2016), not to mention the very important gerrymander case from Wisconsin that struck down lines inspired by excessively partisan interests ("Judges Find Wisconsin Redistricting Unfairly Favored Republicans," N. Y. Times, Nov. 21, 2016).

As the year draws to a close, however, we focus on two cases that are significant to voters and practitioners in New York.

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