By Saranac Hale Spencer
Of the Legal Staff
Last summer’s closely watched challenge to Pennsylvania’s voter ID law is scheduled for a second round this coming summer.
Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson, who heard the case over the summer and granted a preliminary injunction just before the November election, has scheduled the new trial to start July 15 in Harrisburg.
The initial case volleyed from Simpson’s courtroom to the state’s Supreme Court on appeal and then back to Simpson before the injunction issued.
"I will not restrain election officials from asking for photo ID at the polls; rather, I will enjoin enforcement of those parts of Act 18 which directly result in disenfranchisement," Simpson said in his 18-page opinion in October.
The American Civil Liberties Union, along with other citizens’ groups and the Washington, D.C., firm of Arnold & Porter, brought the suit challenging the law – passed in March 2012 – arguing that it would disenfranchise voters.
The ACLU plans to ask the court to extend the preliminary injunction until the case is concluded, according to a release from the organization.
Saranac Hale Spencer can be contacted at 215-557-2449 or [email protected] Follow her on Twitter @SSpencerTLI.