Friday, May 15, 2015

TTV update

True the Vote

True the Vote’s IRS Lawsuit Put on Hold (In a Good Way)

As anyone following the True the Vote v. IRS lawsuit knows, updates tend to be few and far between. Late last week, our dry spell was broken. On May 8 near close of business, TTV was notified by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia that our appeal was to “be held in abeyance pending further order of the court” as it resolves a similar case, Z Street v. Koskinen.

You may have
read something about Z Street last week. Essentially, the pro-Israel group felt that its 501(c)(3) application was unfairly scrutinized and delayed during the IRS targeting period because their views differed greatly from the Obama Administration. The IRS tried to dismiss the case, arguing that the Anti-Injunction Act (AIA) disallowed lawsuits “for the purpose of restraining the assessment or collection of any tax.” The Court went with Z Street, however, agreeing that they were fighting over whether due process occurred – not if monies should change hands. The IRS appealed.

In late 2013, the IRS threw many of the same arguments against TTV’s claim, including the AIA strategy. The district court ruled to dismiss, primarily on the grounds that TTV’s claim had been mooted by the government’s eventual decision to grant our 501(c)(3) status. True the Vote appealed shortly thereafter.

Fast forward to last week. Z Street’s date for oral arguments at the Court of Appeals occurs and the DOJ makes a mess of it all, according to accounts in The Wall Street Journal. Among the highlights was a statement from [Clinton appointee] Judge Garland, who told government lawyers that every issue raised by the DOJ had already been “rejected.” He further stated, “in a way we have already decided every issue before us today, against you.” Ouch. Judge Garland was not done yet: “If I were you, I would go back and ask your superiors whether they want us to represent that the government’s position in this case is that the government is free to unconstitutionally discriminate against its citizens for 270 days.” Double ouch.

So how does all of this affect True the Vote? Since there is a high likelihood that the government will reinforce its AIA strategy on appeal with TTV, for the sake of consistency the Court affirmatively decided to hold our case until it gets the bugs worked out on the Z Street side. A conservative estimate for the length of time that we might be in a holding pattern is a couple of months. Stay tuned with TTV as we continue down the IRS rabbit hole.
Check Out the May 2015 National Conference Call Replay

The May conference call covered a lot of ground surrounding the various policy proposals, executive actions and lawsuits as they impact the risk of noncitizen voting across the nation. Anyone may access an audio file to replay the call in its entirety by clicking
A Poison Pill for Election Integrity: North Carolina Edition

The use of jury wheel information has long provided a strong starting point for noncitizen voter research in various states. Put plainly, having a copy of someone’s document swearing noncitizenship to dodge jury duty, while finding they affirmed the opposite to become a registered voter, makes for pretty compelling evidence when submitting a challenge. This methodology rightly inspires a sentinel effect that our core civic institutions – held up mostly on the honor system – are being fortified by engaged citizens.

This year, states around the nation are looking to make it easier for citizens to access jury information as a matter of public record. North Carolina was off to a great start in February with
HB 100, which would have made said documents a public record with exceptions for medical or other previously protected reasons. In late April, an amendment to effectively reverse the purpose of the bill was put forward and passed out of the NC House. Our eagle-eyed friends at VIP-NC are now putting pressure on members of the Senate Committee on the Judiciary II to bring the bill back to its original purpose. Noncitizen votes impact us all. Lend your voice to correct this bill by contacting Committee members today.
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