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Table of Contents:

  • Birmingham News report on suit to undo part of State takeover of city schools
  • Publications
  • Johnson v. Riley -- order setting briefing and argument on motion to dismiss
  • Johnson v. Riley -- motion to dismiss and our response
  • Johnson v. Riley -- amended motion for prelimary injunction
  • Johnson v. Riley -- appointment of the 3-judge court
  • Johnson v. Riley -- denial of TRO
  • Johnson v. Riley -- motion for TRO
  • Johnson v. Riley -- motion for prelimary injunction
  • Johnson v. Riley -- Section 5 suit filed (complaint attached)
  • Two Alabama papers interview Ed Still about Voting Rights Act
  • Edward Still and other voting rights attorneys file amicus brief in U.S. Supreme Court
  • Birmingham News quotes Edward Still on voting-rights controversy
  • Riley v. Plump: the Supreme Court dismisses Governor's appeal
  • Riley v. Plump: supplemental brief filed
  • Riley v. Plump -- our Motion to Dismiss or Affirm filed
  • Plump v. Riley: Governor seeks further extension of Bowman's term, loses, and asks Justice Thomas for stay
  • Gov. appeals Plump v. Riley
  • Riley v. Kennedy -- Governor's reply brief filed
  • Amicus briefs (supporting Kennedy) filed in Riley v. Kennedy
  • Riley v. Kennedy -- appellees' brief filed
  • Riley v. Kennedy -- Riley's opening brief in Supreme Court
  • Profile of Fred Plump
  • Plump v. Riley, preliminary injunction requested
  • Plump v. Riley filed
  • Riley v. Kennedy (was Kennedy v. Riley) to be heard by Supreme Court
  • Kennedy v. Riley update, in the Supreme Court
  • Kennedy v. Riley update
  • On a panel at "Working in the Public Interest" Conference
  • Unpublished papers
  • My Cases: Defending Black-Majority District Plans
  • My Cases: Under Section 5, Voting Rights Act
  • Kennedy v. Riley
  • Gooden v. Worley: federal court dismisses case for lack of standing
  • Selected documents from Kennedy v. Riley
  • My Cases: Racial Vote Dilution
  • Birmingham News report on suit to undo part of State takeover of city schools

    The Birmingham News reports on a lawsuit filed by Edward Still for five voters in the City of Birmingham: The state takeover of Birmingham city schools violated the Voting Rights Act of 1965 by overriding the votes of elected board members, a lawsuit filed this week claims.

    The federal lawsuit was filed by five voters, including Birmingham Board of Education members Virginia Volker and Emanuel Ford and Alabama Education Association representative Michael Todd, who lives in the city.

    The suit, filed against state Superintendent Tommy Bice, former state Superintendent Ed Richardson - who is leading the takeover in Birmingham - and the state Board of Education, says the takeover transferred power from a majority-black electorate and majority-black school board in Birmingham to the state Board of Education, which has a majority-white membership.

    The suit seeks injunctions to stop votes from being overturned while the court is deciding whether the takeover is even allowed. -- "Federal lawsuit claims state violated Voting Rights Act in takeover of Birmingham schools"

    This entry was posted by Edward at 8:24 AM, 15 February 2013 | TrackBack (0)

    Publications

    Co-author, The USERRA Manual (Thompson West, annual editions since 2008) (with Kathryn Piscitelli)

    Co-author, "Job Rights of Employees who Serve in the Military: USERRA Rights and Obligations," ATLA Docket (Ark. Trial Lawyers Ass'n), Spring 2008 (with Mary Dryovage and Kathryn S. Piscitelli) [This article has been published in two AAJ newsletters -- Employment Rights Section and Federal Tort and Military Advocacy Section]

    Author, “Voting Rights Act of 1965,” “Right to Vote,” “Reynolds v. Sims,” in Encyclopedia of American Law (D. Schultz, ed.) (2002)

    Author, “A Simple Agenda for Election Reform,” 50 The National Voter (2001)

    Co-author, “Is There a Constitutional Right to Vote and Be Represented? The Case of the District of Columbia,” 48 Am. U. L. Rev. (1999) (edited transcript of conference session)

    Co-author, “Alternative Electoral Systems as Voting Rights Remedies,” 18 FEC Journal of Election Administration (1997)

    Co-author, “One Person, Seven Votes: The Cumulative Voting Experience in Chilton County, Alabama,” in Affirmative Action and Representation: Shaw v. Reno and the Future of Voting Rights (1997)

    Co-author, “Alternative Voting: How it Works,” Voting Rights Review (Spring 1995) [HTML]

    Co-author, “Cumulative Voting as a Remedy in Voting Rights Cases,” 84 National Civic Review (1995)

    Author, “Alabama,” in The Quiet Revolution: The Impact of the Voting Rights Act in the South, 1965-1990 (1994)

    Author, “Symposium: The Supreme Court, Racial Politics, and the Right to Vote: Shaw v. Reno and the Future of the Voting Rights Act,” 44 Am. U. L. Rev. (1994) (edited transcript of conference)

    Author, “Cumulative and Limited Voting in Alabama,” in United States Electoral Systems: Their Impact on Minorities and Women (1992)

    Author, “The Hunting of the Gerrymander”, 38 UCLA L. Rev. (1991) (review of Political Gerrymandering and the Courts)

    Author, “Voluntary Constituencies: Modified At-Large Voting As A Remedy For Minority Vote Dilution In Judicial Elections,” 9 Yale L. & Pol’y Rev. (1991)

    Author, “Alternatives to Single-Member Districts,” in Davidson and Grofman, eds., Minority Vote Dilution (1984)

    Author, "Election Reform Bill Will Add Uniformity to U.S. Voting System," op-ed piece in Birmingham News, 20 October 2002

    Author, "State must consider what-ifs in revising election laws," op-ed piece in Birmingham News, 17 November 2002

    This entry was posted by Edward at 11:06 AM, 23 June 2011 | TrackBack (0)

    Johnson v. Riley -- order setting briefing and argument on motion to dismiss

    15 Order Re Mot-dismiss Brief and Arg

    This entry was posted by Edward at 9:45 AM, 16 September 2010 | TrackBack (0)

    Johnson v. Riley -- appointment of the 3-judge court

    9 Appt of 3-Judge Court

    This entry was posted by Edward at 1:29 PM, 11 August 2010 | TrackBack (0)

    Johnson v. Riley -- denial of TRO

    7 Denial of TRO

    This entry was posted by Edward at 2:38 PM, 06 August 2010 | TrackBack (0)

    Johnson v. Riley -- motion for prelimary injunction

    We have filed a motion for a preliminary injunction and brief in Johnson v. Riley. The complaint is found here.

    3 Mot-prelim Injunction

    4 Brief on Prelim Inj

    4-1 Exh A

    4-2 Exh B

    This entry was posted by Edward at 2:17 PM, 02 August 2010 | TrackBack (0)

    Johnson v. Riley -- Section 5 suit filed (complaint attached)

    The Tuscaloosa News reports on a new voting rights suit filed by James U. Blacksher, Fred D. Gray, and Edward Still: Local politicians in Greene and Macon counties have joined to file a federal lawsuit claiming that Gov. Bob Riley's bingo raids are perpetuating racial injustice by thwarting the intent of black voters.

    The suit, filed Thursday, was intended to reopen Greenetrack and avoid a raid at Victory-Land in Macon County. The raid appears imminent after the state Supreme Court on Friday gave the governor's anti-gambling task force a green light.

    Voting rights lawyer Ed Still is one of several attorneys who filed the lawsuit over the June raid and confiscation of more than 800 bingo machines from the Greenetrack bingo casino in Greene County.

    Still said on Friday that Riley never got clearance from the U.S. Justice Department to take action against Greene and Macon counties, which have local constitutional amendments approved by voters authorizing bingo.

    The lawsuit's premise is simple: Riley's actions reversed voter intentions in both counties, effectively canceling their votes. Read the whole story --> Suit claims bingo raids thwart black voters | TuscaloosaNews.com

    Johnson v. Riley (Voting Rights Act Complaint)

    This entry was posted by Edward at 5:30 PM, 01 August 2010 | TrackBack (0)

    Two Alabama papers interview Ed Still about Voting Rights Act

    Since the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District Number One v. Holder on 22 June, both the Birmingham News and the Mobile Press Register have interviewed Ed Still about the impact of the decision and what should happen next.

    In the Birmingham News, Still suggested more bailouts as the way to prove the law works only where there is still a problem.

    Edward Still, a Birmingham lawyer with a specialty in voting rights cases, said Monday that communities in Alabama with few black voters and no history of discrimination should apply for the bailout. Doing so, he said, would negate the argument from Riley that the law unfairly punishes the entire South for the mistakes of just a few jurisdictions that have had voting procedures recently rejected by the Justice Department.

    "It would be good for them and it would be good for the Justice Department," Still said.

    The Mobile Press Register article centered on the idea that more Southern cities, towns, and counties should seek "bailout" -- a declaratory judgment that the jurisdiction is no longer subject to the preclearance requirements of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. Still warned that the Supreme Court decision should be taken as a warning:

    If politicians don't address those concerns relatively quickly, some be lieve that the court will take a future opportunity to dump preclearance altogether.

    "They're going to lower their sights and aim for the waterline rather than ahead of the ship," said Edward Still, a Birmingham voting rights attorney. Greater use of the bailout option could help head off such a showdown, he said.


    This entry was posted by Edward at 9:22 PM, 29 June 2009 | TrackBack (0)

    Edward Still and other voting rights attorneys file amicus brief in U.S. Supreme Court

    A group of veteran voting-rights attorneys lead by Julius Chambers, former director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, has filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court in Northwest Austin Municipal Unitily District v. Holder. The attorneys argue:

    In comparison to Appellant’s limited familiarity with elections, attorney amici collectively have more than 200 years of experience litigating voting rights cases in covered and non-covered jurisdictions throughout the country. This experience has led amici to recognize the persistent need for timely enforcement capable of deterring illegal voting schemes before they are implemented—a task for which caseby- case litigation under Section 2 is ill-suited, but for which Section 5 was designed.

    Were Section 5 unavailable, there would be a significant increase in the number of discriminatory voting changes that voters and jurisdictions would be forced to address through litigation. But Section 2 cannot substitute for the prophylactic function of Section 5. In practice, amici have seen Section 2 and Section 5 operate in the complementary fashion that Congress intended. Where minority voters in covered jurisdictions cannot find a lawyer or afford to pay one, Section 5 provides the means to redress new violations of their rights. And where minority voters are able to get their day in court, Section 5 provides the assurance that their hard-won and expensive battles will not have been fought in vain if a jurisdiction repeats similar violations.

    Too many discriminatory voting changes would remain unchallenged if Section 5 were invalidated. For individual minority voters, the cost and effort required to pursue Section 2 cases are great barriers to private enforcement, a problem made more acute by the small number of practitioners in covered jurisdictions who are willing and able to take such cases. This creates a perverse incentive—all too often realized—for officials to continue suspect practices because they know most voters cannot challenge them. In contrast, Section 5 serves as a deterrent to such practices.

    Amici’s lengthy experience in the voting rights arena shows the importance of Congress’s considered decision to reauthorize Section 5. Without it, minority voters will fail to realize the full promise of the Voting Rights Act.

    The amici include the following lawyers:James U. Blacksher, Armand Derfner, Anita Earls, Robert McDuff, Edward Still, and Ellis Turnage. The lawyers are represented by William D. Kissinger, Sujal J. Shah, Erin Shannon-Conroy, Perry M. Grossman, and Sarah L. Bishop of Bibgham McCutchen LLP.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 8:53 PM, 25 March 2009 | TrackBack (0)

    Birmingham News quotes Edward Still on voting-rights controversy

    The Birmingham News sought out Edward Still for his reaction to Gov. Bob Riley's recent amicus brief in a U.S. Supreme Court voting rights case. The News sets up the Governor's premise this way:

    The section of the Voting Rights Act that requires Alabama to get federal approval for election-related changes is an unnecessary burden on a state that no longer needs supervision from Washington to ensure fair voting, Gov. Bob Riley contends in a brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court.

    Later in the article,

    Birmingham lawyer Ed Still, an advocate of the Voting Rights Act, said Riley's submission to the justices doesn't address whether the extension of the law is constitutional.

    "This is just part of a campaign that Riley has had for a while now - he and his attorneys general, trying to cripple the Voting Rights Act any way they could. This is a whine," Still said Tuesday. "I suspect this is the governor's way of providing some war stories to the conservative justices who want to strike down Section 5."

    The whole article is here.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 8:48 PM, 05 March 2009 | TrackBack (0)

    Riley v. Plump: the Supreme Court dismisses Governor's appeal

    On the first day of the October 2008 Term of the U.S. Supreme Court, the Court dismissed Governor Riley's appeal. We had argued in our Motion to Dismiss or Affirm that the Governor's appeals had been filed outside the legal time limits.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 6:56 AM, 07 October 2008 | TrackBack (0)

    Riley v. Plump: supplemental brief filed

    My co-counsel and I filed a supplemantal brief in Riley v. Plump, No. 07-1460 in the U.S. Supreme Court, yesterday to bring to the Court's attention the recent developments in the case, including the preclearance of the new law setting a November election to fill the vacancy on the Jefferson County Commission. We argue that these developments moot the Governor's appeal.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 8:04 AM, 23 September 2008 | TrackBack (0)

    Riley v. Plump -- our Motion to Dismiss or Affirm filed

    This morning, my co-counsel and I filed the Motion to Dismiss or Affirm the appeal of Gov. Riley in Riley v. Plump, No. 07-1460, U.S. Supreme Court.

    We also submitted this letter to the Clerk to inform him of additional developments in the case.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 1:12 PM, 23 July 2008 | TrackBack (0)

    Plump v. Riley: Governor seeks further extension of Bowman's term, loses, and asks Justice Thomas for stay

    Governor Riley asked the three-judge court for a stay pending appeal. We (Jim Blacksher and I) opposed the motion. The court has now granted a one-month extension to the stay.

    Riley, not satisfied with one month, has asked Justice Clarence Thomas for a stay for the full time that the appeal is pending.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 9:19 PM, 17 April 2008 | TrackBack (0)

    Gov. appeals Plump v. Riley

    Governor Riley has filed a long-winded notice of appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court from the Judgment in Plump v. Riley.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 5:17 PM, 22 March 2008 | TrackBack (0)

    Riley v. Kennedy -- Governor's reply brief filed

    Gov. Riley has filed his reply brief in the U.S. Supreme Court case of Riley v. Kennedy.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 1:23 PM, 11 March 2008 | TrackBack (0)

    Amicus briefs (supporting Kennedy) filed in Riley v. Kennedy

    Amicus briefs have been filed supporting the Kennedy plaintiffs in Riley v. Kennedy, No. 07-77, in the US Supreme Court:

    United States

    ACLU

    Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law

    NAACP Legal Defense Fund

    This entry was posted by Edward at 9:14 PM, 21 February 2008 | TrackBack (0)

    Riley v. Kennedy -- appellees' brief filed

    The appellees' brief in Riley v. Kennedy has been filed with the U.S. Supreme Court. While I am "counsel of record" in this case, a great team of people listed on the cover of the brief plus several students in the Stanford Law School Supreme Court Litigation Clinic have contributed to the brief.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 1:00 PM, 13 February 2008 | TrackBack (0)

    Riley v. Kennedy -- Riley's opening brief in Supreme Court

    Governor Riley has filed his opening brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in Riley v. Kennedy, No. 07-77. You may download the brief here.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 4:50 PM, 14 January 2008 | TrackBack (0)

    Profile of Fred Plump

    The Birmingham News has a profile of Fred Plump, my client and the plaintiff in the suit against Gov. Riley's appointment of a county commissioner: Fred Plump looks out for the underdog.

    When a guy he knew was sure to get pummeled by friends in the neighborhood, Plump took a stand and walked him to safety.

    "I knew they were wrong," Plump said. "So, I decided to walk this guy clean out of the neighborhood, stepping out with my neck on the line. When I saw things that were not right, I was always standing up for others."

    Plump, of Fairfield, filed a federal discrimination lawsuit in the early 1970s when he sought to become a Birmingham firefighter after passing the firefighter's exam, but was passed over for a spot. -- Activist Fred Plump relishes fight with Gov. Riley over Jefferson County post- al.com

    The whole story is also available here as a PDF file.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 6:30 AM, 27 December 2007 | TrackBack (0)

    Plump v. Riley, preliminary injunction requested

    We have filed an amended complaint and a motion for a preliminary injunction. The Birmingham News has a story on the new filings.

    The amended complaint adds new theories to the complaint -- that is, new legal claims on which the court can rule. In addition to basing our claim on Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act (which is based on the idea that there is a change in election laws that must be precleared), we have added claims that the Governor's action -- even if they are precleared -- have a discriminatory effect.

    Amended complaint [pdf]
    Motion for preliminary injunction [pdf]
    Birmingham News article [pdf]

    This entry was posted by Edward at 7:31 AM, 29 November 2007 | TrackBack (0)

    Plump v. Riley filed

    James Blacksher and I have filed on behalf of a Jefferson County voter, Mr. Fred Plump, a suit against Gov. Bob Riley. Despite the earlier ruling in Kennedy v. Riley, the Governor still persists in believing that he has the authority to appoint a county commissioner to fill a vacancy, even when there is a local law to the contrary. Here are the pleadings so far:

    Complaint [pdf]
    Exhibit A [pdf]
    Exhibit B [pdf]
    Exhibit C [pdf]
    Exhibit D [pdf]

    This entry was posted by Edward at 10:50 AM, 21 November 2007 | TrackBack (0)

    Riley v. Kennedy (was Kennedy v. Riley) to be heard by Supreme Court

    The Supreme Court agreed to hear Governor Riley's appeal today in the case known in the Supreme Court as Riley v. Kennedy, No. 07-77. The order from the Court is here.

    The Governor's reply brief was filed a couple of weeks ago. It is here.

    The Questions Presented by the Governor are the following:

    This Section 5 litigation involves two decisions of the Supreme Court of Alabama, Stokes v. Noonan, 534 So. 2d 237 (Ala. 1988), and Riley v. Kennedy, 928 So. 2d 1013 (Ala. 2005). Those decisions concern the manner of filling vacancies on the Mobile County Commission and are based on valid, race-neutral, generally-applicable principles of law. The three-judge district court held that both decisions required preclearance to be enforceable. The State submitted the decisions for preclearance, and the Attorney General of the United States interposed an objection. The district court then entered a remedy order vacating a gubernatorial appointment that had relied on these State court decisions to fill a vacancy that had arisen. This appeal presents the following questions:

    1. Whether the decision of a covered jurisdiction’s highest court that a precleared State law is unconstitutional and, thereby, invalid as a matter of State law is a change that affects voting that must be precleared before it can be enforced.

    2. Whether the preclearance of a trial court’s ruling that affects voting while that ruling is on appeal and subject to possible reversal establishes a baseline such that the reversal of that decision is a change that must be precleared before it may be enforced.

    Earlier information on the case is available here,
    here, here, here, here, and here.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 3:06 PM, 20 November 2007 | TrackBack (0)

    Kennedy v. Riley update, in the Supreme Court

    My co-counsel and I have filed a motion to dismiss or affirm the State of Alabama's appeal in Riley v. Kennedy, No. 07-77 in the U.S. Supreme Court. The State's jurisdictional statement is available here.

    The case was brought by my clients under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act for an injunction against the Governor's appointment of a replacement county commissioner in Mobile County. Our suit asserted that the Governor had not obtained preclearance of an Alabama Supreme Court decision before enforcing it.

    Earlier information on the case is available here, here, here, here, and here.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 1:04 PM, 29 October 2007 | TrackBack (0)

    Kennedy v. Riley update

    After the federal court ordered the Governor to obtain preclearance under the Voting Rights Act before he administers the law requiring appointment of replacement county commissioners, the Justice Department denied preclearance and a request for reconsideration. The Court then granted plaintiffs' motion for relief and denied the State's motion for a stay. The State has now filed a notice of appeal.

    However, the Probate Judge has not called the election yet, but has moved to intervene in the federal case and asks the Court to set a schedule for the election that will take longer than the 90 days allowed by the statute. The plaintiffs have just filed a response suggesting a shorter time limit.

    Earlier information on the case is here.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 11:03 AM, 21 May 2007 | TrackBack (0)

    On a panel at "Working in the Public Interest" Conference

    On 30 and 31 March, I will be a member of a panel discussing felon disfranchisement on the University of Georgia School of Law Conference on Working in the Public Interest. The Conference organizers describe it this way:

    Entirely student organized, WIPI seeks to bring together eminent practitioners in their respective fields, students, and faculty to discuss practical approaches to lawyering which can best serve the poor. Practical methods of challenging poverty are often not covered in traditional law school courses. This conference seeks to remedy that and provide dynamic, creative ways to combat poverty through the vehicle of the law.

    For more information about the Conference, including the schedule of panels, go to the WIPI site.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 11:05 AM, 22 March 2007 | TrackBack (0)

    Unpublished papers

    Race and Election Reform, June 2001, 12 pages, [PDF]

    A summary of the Voting Rights Act, 4 pages, [Word format]

    Bailout under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, 5 pages, [PDF]

    Federal Restrictions on State and Local Campaigns, Political Groups and Individuals, December 2002, 27 pages [PDF]

    Candidate Compliance with the Alabama Fair Campaign Practices Act, February 2003, 4 pages [PDF]

    Free and Fair Elections: A Quick Comparison on Election Administration in Florida and Bosnia, 17 pages, conference paper, early 2002, [PDF]

    This entry was posted by Edward at 6:04 PM, 23 September 2006 | TrackBack (0)

    My Cases: Defending Black-Majority District Plans

    Fouts v. Harris, 88 F.Supp.2d 1351 (S.D. Fla. 1999), aff’d sub. nom. Chandler v. Harris, 529 U.S. 1084 (2000) -- court dismissed constitutional challenge to three South Florida congressional districts on grounds of laches; I represented black intervenors defending districting plan

    Sanders v. Dooly County, GA, 245 F.3d 1289 (11th Cir 2001) -- defense of majority black districts used in county commission and school board elections; issue of laches in declaratory judgment cases

    Thompson v. Smith, 52 F.Supp.2d 1364 (M.D. Ala) (3-judge court) -- defense of majority-minority legislative districts in Alabama; dismissal of some claims

    This entry was posted by Edward at 8:00 PM, 17 September 2006 | TrackBack (0)

    My Cases: Under Section 5, Voting Rights Act

    Kennedy v. Riley, --- F.Supp.2d ----, 2006 WL 2413709 (M.D.Ala., Aug 18, 2006) -- in suit regarding appointment of county commissioner, court held that two decisions of the Alabama Supreme Court could not be enforced until they had been precleared

    Reno v. Bossier Parish School Board, 7 F.Supp.2d 29 (D DC 1998) (3-judge court), aff’d 528 U.S. 320 (2000) -- Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act requires proof of intent to retrogress rather than generalized intent to discriminate against protected voter group

    Presley v. Etowah County Commission, 502 US 491 (1992), on remand, 869 F.Supp. 1555 (M.D. Ala.1994) -- held: Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act does not apply to changes in the powers of county commissioners; on remand, achieved relief under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act

    Mack v. Russell County Com'n, 840 F.Supp. 869 (M.D.Ala. 1993) -- related case with Presley

    Singer v. City of Alabaster, 2002 U.S. LEXIS 3231, 122 S. Ct. 1908,152 L. Ed. 2d 819 (2002), aff’g 821 So. 2d 954 (Ala. 2001) -- defended winning candidate in election contest against claim that city had violated plaintiffs’ rights by obeying Section 5

    Henderson v. Harris, 804 F.Supp. 288 (M.D.Ala. 1992)

    Virginia v. Reno, 117 F.Supp.2d 46 (D.D.C. 2000), aff’d 531 U.S. 1062 (2001) -- Virginia sought preclearance of its law barring the use of adjusted census data; dismissed on grounds of unripeness

    Ward v. State of Alabama, 31 F.Supp.2d 968 (M.D. Ala. 1998) (3-judge court) -- successful Section 5 seeking injunction to enforcement of unprecleared change in Alabama absentee voting law

    Sumter County Democratic Executive Committee v. Dearman, 514 F.2d 1168 (5th Cir. 1975) -- challenge under Section 5 of Voting Rights Act; second appeal: Ward v. Dearman, 626 F.2d 489 (5th Cir. 1980)

    This entry was posted by Edward at 5:15 PM, 08 September 2006 | TrackBack (0)

    Kennedy v. Riley

    The Mobile Press Register reports: A panel of three federal judges ruled Friday that Gov. Bob Riley should have sought federal approval before appointing Juan Chastang to the Mobile County Commission.

    The judges ordered Riley to get clearance from the U.S. Department of Justice that the Chastang appointment complied with the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The governor has 90 days to ask the Justice Department for its approval.

    If the Justice Department finds that the appointment violated voters' rights, Chastang's nomination could be voided, and a special election could be held to fill the seat. -- Judges say Justice must OK Chastang

    Comment: The court's decision may be viewed here.

    Cecil Gardner and Vance McCrary (of the Gardner, Middlebrooks, Gibbons & Kittrell firm in Mobile, AL) and I represented the plaintiffs in that action.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 8:39 PM, 21 August 2006 | TrackBack (0)

    Gooden v. Worley: federal court dismisses case for lack of standing

    On 26 May 2006, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama dismissed a challenge to the practice of the Secretary of State of encouraging registrars to bar applicants convicted of any felony from registering. The State Constitution bars only those convicted of felonies involving moral turpitude. The NAACP Legal Defense Fund and I had brought suit under Section of the Voting Rights Act to require the Secretary of State to cease this practice until she obtained preclearance for it. You can download the file here.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 7:35 PM, 30 May 2006 | TrackBack (0)

    Selected documents from Kennedy v. Riley

    Here are documents in Yvonne Kennedy et al v. Governor Bob Riley:

    Complaint

    Defendant's Answer

    Plaintiffs' Trial Brief and Reply Brief.

    Defendant's Trial Brief

    The suit alleges that the Governor and the State violated Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act by failing to preclear a decision of the Alabama Supreme Court which changed the method of filling vacancies on the Mobile County Commission.

    This entry was posted by Edward at 7:27 AM, 30 March 2006 | TrackBack (0)

    My Cases: Racial Vote Dilution

    Bolden v. City of Mobile, 423 F.Supp. 384 (S.D. Ala.. 1976); aff'd 571 F.2d 238 (5th Cir. 1978), rev. 446 US 55 (1980); vac. and rem. 626 F.2d 1324 (5th Cir. 1980); after remand by US Supreme Court, 542 F.Supp. 1050 (S.D. Ala. 1982) -- reapportionment of Mobile city commission

    Brown v. Moore, 428 F.Supp. 1123 (S.D. Ala. 1976), vac. & rem. sub nom. Williams v. Brown, 446 US 236 (1980), vac. & rem. sub nom. Brown v. Moore, 631 F.2d 731 (5th Cir. 1980) (merits); sub nom. Moore v. Brown, 448 US 1335 (1980) (Powell, Cir.J.) (application for stay); after remand by US Supreme Court, 542 F.Supp. 1078 (S.D. Ala. 1982), aff'd 706 F.2d 1103 (11th Cir. 1983), aff'd mem. sub nom. Board of School Comm'rs v. Brown, 464 US 1005 (1983) -- reapportionment of Mobile county commission and school board

    Johnson v. Hamrick, 1998 WL 476186 (N.D.Ga.1998), 196 F.3d 1216 (11th Cir. 1999) -- successful Section 2 claim against city council remanded for additional findings of fact

    Davis v. Chiles, 139 F.3d 1414 (11th Cir. 1998), cert. den. sub nom. Davis v. Bush, 526 U.S. 1003 --challenge to at-large judicial elections

    Dillard v. Crenshaw County, 640 F.Supp. 1347, 649 F.Supp. 289 (M.D. Ala. 1986) (11th Cir. 1987) -- reapportionment action against nine county commissions: Pickens, Etowah, Calhoun, Russell, Lawrence, Crenshaw, Coffee, Talladega, Escambia; all counties settled except Calhoun, which appealed on the remedy issue; the case was later amended to ask for reapportionment of 188 other county commissions, county school boards, and city and town councils; additional reported decisions are listed below:

    Dillard v. Crenshaw County (Calhoun County), 679 F.Supp. 1546 (M.D.Ala. 1988), aff’d 831 F.2d 246 (11th Cir. 1987)

    Dillard v. Baldwin County Commission, 694 F.Supp. 836 (M.D. Ala. 1988), 701 F.Supp. 808 (M.D.Ala., 1988) aff’d 862 F.2d 878 (11th Cir. 1988)

    Dillard v. Baldwin County Board of Education, 686 F.Supp. 1459, 47 Ed. Law Rep. 915 (M.D. Ala. 1988)

    Dillard v. Town of Louisville, 730 F.Supp. 1546 (M.D.Ala., 1990)

    Dillard v Baldwin County Commission, 53 F.Supp.2d 1266 (M.D.Ala.1999), vac. and rem. 225 F.3d 1271 (11th Cir. 2000) --representing black voters in challenge by intervenors against authority of federal court to order change in size of county commission in racial vote dilution case

    Dillard v. Chilton County Board of Education, 699 F.Supp. 870 (M.D. Ala. 1988), aff'd 868 F.2d 1274, 1989 US App Lexis 1336 (11th Cir. 1989) -- approval of settlement containing cumulative voting plan

    Dillard v. City of Greensboro, 865 F.Supp. 773, 870 F.Supp. 1031 (M.D. Ala. 1994), vacated and remanded 74 F.3d 230 (11th Cir. 1996), on remand 946 F.Supp. 946 (M.D. Ala. 1996), 956 F.Supp. 1576 (M.D. Ala.1997); 34 F.Supp.2d 1330 (M.D. Ala. 1999) (awarding fees)

    Dillard v. City of Foley, 926 F.Supp. 1053 (M.D. Ala. 1995), 166 F.R.D. 503, 35 Fed.R.Serv.3d 314 (M.D. Ala. 1996), 995 F.Supp. 1358 (M.D. Ala. 1998) -- approving agreement for annexation elections to settle suit claiming refusal to annex black-majority areas, and second opinion on fees

    Dillard v. Crenshaw County, 748 F.Supp. 819 (M.D.Ala. 1990) --court enforced settlement made by Shelby County Commission despite its attempt to withdraw

    Dillard v. Town of Cuba, 708 F.Supp. 1244 (M.D. Ala. 1988) -- approving settlements for limited voting plans in Towns of Cuba and Waldo

    Dillard v. Town of North Johns, 717 F.Supp. 1471 (M.D.Ala., 1989)

    Sumbry v. Russell County, Ala., 993 F.Supp. 1439 (M.D.Ala. 1998) --representing black voters in challenge by intervenors against authority of federal court to order change in size of county commission in racial vote dilution case

    Medders v. Autauga County Board of Education, 858 F.Supp. 1118 (M.D. Ala. 1994) (awarding fees)

    Dillard v. City of Elba, 863 F.Supp. 1550 (M.D. Ala. 1993) (awarding fees)

    Brooks v. Hobbie, 631 So.2d 883 (1993) -- redistricting of Alabama Legislature

    Hawthorne v. Baker, 750 F.Supp. 1090 (M.D.Ala. 1990), 756 F.Supp. 527 (M.D.Ala. 1990), 762 F.Supp. 1475 (M.D.Ala. 1991) --challenge to method of selection of members of governing bodies of state and county Democratic committees (Sections 2 and 5 of Voting Rights Act)

    Taylor v. Jefferson County Commission, CV 84_C_1730_S (N.D. Ala.), settled August 1985 -- resulted in the Jefferson County Commission being changed from a three_member at_large body to a five_member body being elected from single_member districts

    Adams v. City of Gadsden, CV 85_PT_1054_M (N.D. Ala.), settled June 1985 -- resulted in Gadsden's abandonment of the commission form of government and utilizing a mayor and 7_member council, elected from single_member districts

    McMillan v. Escambia County, Fla., 638 F.2d 1239 and 1249 (5th Cir. 1981), county commission aspect reversed on rehearing 688 F.2d 960 (5th Cir. 1982), reh. en banc den. 692 F.2d 758 (5th Cir. 1982); vac. and rem. 466 US 48 (1984); on remand from Supreme Court, aff'd 748 F.2d 1037 (5th Cir. 1984); on remand from Court of Appeals, 559 F.Supp. 720 (ND Fla 1983), appeal docketed No. 83_3275 (11th Cir), cert. before judgment denied, 464 US 830 (1983) -- reapportionment of Escambia County commission and school board and Pensacola city commission

    Jenkins v. City of Pensacola, 638 F.2d 1249 (5th Cir. 1981) -- remedy phase of city aspect of McMillan; proper use of mixed plan of apportionment to remedy a proven racial dilution by at_large elections

    Nevett v. Sides, 533 F.2d 1361 (5th Cir. 1976), 571 F.2d 209 (5th Cir. 1978), cert. denied 446 US 95 (1980) -- reapportionment of Fairfield

    Corder v. Kirksey, 585 F.2d 708 (5th Cir. 1978), 625 F.2d 520 (5th Cir. 1980), 639 F.2d 1191 (5th Cir. 1981), rehearing denied 688 F.2d 991 (5th Cir. 1982), cert. denied, 460 US 1013 (1983) -- reapportionment of Pickens Co. commission and school board

    Broadhead v. Ezell, 348 F.Supp. 1244 (S.D. Ala. 1972) -- reapportionment of Choctaw County Commission

    Cane v. Worcester County, Maryland, 35 F.3d 921 (4th Cir. 1994); 59 F.3d 165 (4th Cir. 1995) -- amicus curiae brief supporting use of cumulative voting as a remedy for racial vote dilution

    This entry was posted by Edward at 9:47 PM, 01 December 2005 | TrackBack (0)


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