The Governor’s Commission for Judicial Appointments is now accepting applications for the chancellor vacancy in the 30th Judicial District Chancery Court (Shelby County). The vacancy has been created by the appointment of Chancellor Kenny Armstrong to the Tennessee Court of Appeals, effective September 1.
Any interested applicant must be a licensed attorney who is at least 30 years of age, a resident of the state for five years, and a resident of the 30th Judicial District. Applicants must complete the designated application, which is available at www.tncourts.gov, and submit it to the Administrative Office of the Courts by 3 p.m. on Monday, August 25, 2014.
The Governor’s Commission for Judicial Appointments will interview all qualified applicants in Memphis at a location to be announced. The meeting will include a public hearing, during which members of the public may express their opinions about the applicants. The interview and public hearing will be open to the public.
More information and the application can be found here.
The court determined that the city of Memphis qualifies as “a branch, department, agency or entity of this state,” the standard written into law in 2011 by the Legislature. Lawmakers said voters could cast ballots using photo IDs issued by such entities, or by other states or the federal government.
The city in its argument for finding the law unconstitutional had said it imposed undue costs on voters and violated the equal protection clause since voters casting mail-in ballots are not required to show photo ID.
The court dismissed those assertions.
The requirement that prospective voters present photographic identification to vote in person is not an unconstitutional burden on the right to vote under the Tennessee Constitution.
More from the decision:
In absentee voting, the voter does not appear before an election official and, therefore, cannot present photographic identification.
Such a requirement in the context of absentee voting would be nonsensical. We hold that requiring in-person voters to provide photographic identification while not requiring absentee voters to do so does not violate Article XI, Sec. 8 of the Tennessee Constitution.
“While I am encouraged our law was ruled constitutional, the fact the Court decided to add to it is disappointing,” Maggart, R-Hendersonville, said in a statement. “Not only has the Court gone beyond the clear intent of the law by allowing library cards, it has also created an exception for the city of Memphis that falls below the standard for the rest of Tennessee. This is the definition of ‘legislating from the bench’ and, frankly, is unacceptable.”
Two GOP lawmakers who will be, and will wield far-reaching power to shape any such legislation, responded to the ruling.
“I might not have ruled that way, but they are the court. They are the law of the land,” House Speaker Beth Harwell, R-Nashville, said in an interview with TNReport. Harwell said she would need to review the court’s decision before commenting further but that she would not be surprised if the Legislature took action.
Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey said the court had not properly interpreted the will of the Legislature.
“While allowing library cards clearly violates the legislative intent of this law, the court rightly affirmed the law’s constitutionality,” Ramsey, R-Blountville, said in a statement.
Tennessee Citizen Action, a left-leaning advocacy group that has opposed the law, cheered the portion of the ruling allowing for library cards.
“It should send a clear message to the Tennessee State Legislature that their attempts last session to limit allowable IDs to only a handful was both restrictive and excessive,” Mary Mancini, executive director of Tennessee Citizen Action, said in a statement.
The state’s photo ID law is among the strictest in the country, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Eleven states require photo identification at the polls. In six others, photo ID laws are being litigated or still require approval from the Justice Department.
Nineteen states require nonphoto identification at the polls, according to the NCSL.
http://tnreport.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/3/files/2012/08/032612-Bus-Voter-ID.jpg270610Editorial Staffhttp://tnreport.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/3/files/2012/07/logo_438x125.pngEditorial Staff2012-10-25 22:48:462012-10-26 14:41:47Memphis Library Cards OK for Voter ID, Court Finds