NH ‘Ballot Selfie Ban’ Ruled Unconstitutional

Federal Court rules 'ballot selfie ban' unconstitutional

By Steve MacDonald

Back in 2014, Democrat New Hampshire House Rep. Timmy Horrigan sponsored a change to election law that would make it illegal to share a picture of your completed ballot online. It passed 156 to 121 (135 Democrats and 21 Republicans favored the change), and Democrat Governor Maggie Hassan Signed it into law. It was known as the ‘Ballot Selfie Ban.’

Yesterday the First Circuit Court of Appeals. Verdict? Unconstitutional violation of the first amendment right to free speech. From WMUR:

“The restriction affects voters who are engaged in core political speech, an area highly protected by the First Amendment,” the court said in its ruling. “Ballot selfies have taken on a special communicative value: They both express support for a candidate and communicate that a voter has in fact given his or her vote to that candidate.

The American Civil Liberties Union’s New Hampshire chapter challenged the law on behalf of (Rep. Leon) Rideout and two other voters.

“The 1st Circuit correctly recognized that political speech is essential to a functioning democracy,” ACLU legal director Gilles Bissonnette said. “The best way to combat vote buying and voter coercion is to investigate and prosecute cases of vote buying and coercion, not ban innocent political speech.”

It’s not every day a Federal Court finds your idea unconstitutional so give Mr. Horrigan a big round of applause for this padding of his resume.

Below is a list of every New Hampshire House Representative who voted in favor of a little more unconstitutional overreach:

house-rep-selfie-ballot-vote

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