The other day a group of left-wing organizations, along with the New York City office of Hughes Hubbard and Reed LLP and Atlanta-based firm of Caplan Cobb, filed suit alleging that Georgia’s exact-match voter registration verification scheme violates the 1965 Voting Rights Act and denies eligible Georgians their right to vote under the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution. Secretary of State Brian Kemp, however, immediately dismissed the claims. The complaint, filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District, concerns Georgia’s voter registration verification process, which requires all of the letters and numbers comprising the applicant’s name, date of birth, driver’s license number or last four digits of the Social Security number to exactly match the same letters and numbers for the applicant in the state’s Department of Drivers Service (DDS) or Social Security Administration (SSA) databases. If even a single letter or number, or a hyphen, space or apostrophe, does not exactly match the database information, and the applicant fails to correct the mismatch in 40 days, the application is automatically “cancelled”, i.e. rejected, and the applicant is not placed on the registration rolls.
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