N.H. Superior Court Judge Hears Arguments in SB3 Voting Law Case

Feb 21, 2018

Credit Michael Brindley/NHPR

A state superior court judge heard arguments in a case challenging the controversial Senate Bill 3 voting law on Tuesday.

 

The bill requires proof-of-residency documents for voters registering within 30 days of an election. It’s been challenged by the League of Women Voters of New Hampshire for adding what it says are ‘confusing’ and ‘intimidating hurdles’ to voting.

 

 

Now the League’s lawyers are accusing the Secretary of State and Attorney General of causing ‘significant delays’ during the discovery process by not providing certain information from the voter registration database. The League’s attorneys argue that voter data -- like whether or not a new voter provided proof they reside in New Hampshire -- is key to assessing SB3’s potential impact.

 

“All litigants in any action certainly have a right to discovery,” said Amanda Callais, an attorney representing the League. “But this is a civil rights action which is focusing on the fundamental right to vote and there is really no more compelling need than that.”

 

Attorneys for the state argue the information requested would be vulnerable to hackers and irrelevant to the case.

 

“Production of the database itself presents very real security risks,” said Assistant Attorney General Anthony Galdieri. “We know there’s a lot of people who like to infiltrate our election system and manipulate it and be very eager to take the personally identifiable information of every registered citizen in New Hampshire.”

 

There seemed to be some possibility of collaboration between plaintiffs and the State though, with Galdieri open to working with the League’s attorneys to find specific queries to run on the voter database.