Voter ID: A divided Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied plaintiffs’ request to hear an initial appeal of the recent Voter ID ruling en banc. Instead, the appeal will be heard initially by a three-judge panel of the Fifth Circuit, which is customary. Plaintiffs had hoped to expedite the process by taking the case straight to the full Fifth Circuit. Ten of the justices voted to deny the request, and four were in favor of taking on the case. In September, a divided Fifth Circuit panel stayed a lower court ruling preventing the state from implementing its revised Voter ID law. Absent further judicial action, that law will be in effect for this year’s general election, and it remains to be seen whether the appeal will have run its course prior to the 2018 primary elections. Whichever party loses with the three-judge panel will almost certainly seek an en banc hearing.
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