Election 2020 in the Courts

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As the 2020 election quickly approaches, the Supreme Court issued two key rulings on state election laws this week—ruling 5-3 in Merill v. People First of Alabama to prevent counties from offering curbside voting in Alabama, and, in Pennsylvania Democratic Party v. Boockvar, upholding Pennsylvania’s extension of its mail-in ballot deadline by a 4-4 vote. This episode recaps those rulings, explores other key election-related cases before courts around the country, and explains the constitutional dimensions of legal battles over voting including why and how a court decides when state laws rise to the level of disenfranchisement or not. Emily Bazelon of the New York Times Magazine and co-host of Slate’s podcast “Political Gabfest”, and Bradley Smith, founder of the Institute for Free Speech at Capital University Law School who previously served on the Federal Election Commission, join host Jeffrey Rosen.

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