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Thursday, July 31, 2014, 12:51 p.m.
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Circuit judge strikes down voter ID law

By The Associated Press

This article was originally published April 24, 2014 at 4:48 p.m. Updated April 24, 2014 at 5:25 p.m.


Pulaski County Circuit Judge Tim Fox (shown in file photo) on April 24, 2014, struck down Arkansas' voter ID law saying it illegally adds a requirement that voters must meet before casting a ballot.

LITTLE ROCK — An Arkansas judge struck down the state's new voter ID law on Thursday, saying it violates the state constitution by adding a requirement that voters must meet before casting a ballot.

Pulaski County Circuit Judge Tim Fox voided the measure in a lawsuit over the way absentee ballots are handled under the law. A separate lawsuit had been filed last week directly challenging the law, which requires voters to show photo identification before casting a ballot.

The law "is declared void and unenforceable," Fox wrote in the ruling.

The Republican-led Legislature approved the law last year, overriding a veto by Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe with a simple majority vote in the House and Senate. Backers of the measure said it was aimed at reducing voter fraud, while opponents said it would disenfranchise voters.

A spokesman for Attorney General Dustin McDaniel, a Democrat, says the state Board of Election Commissioners has asked McDaniel's office to appeal Thursday's ruling, and it will do so.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas, which had filed the separate lawsuit, hailed the ruling.

"The important thing is it indicates voters will be able to vote," Holly Dickson, the group's legal director. "It matters not which suit as long as voters will be able to vote."

The law, which took effect Jan. 1, was used in some local elections earlier this year, but it will be used statewide for the first time during early voting beginning May 5 and during primary elections on May 20.

Read Friday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for more on this story.

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Dontcallmenames says... April 24, 2014 at 4:57 p.m.

Once again, ONE person overrides the will of the people and our elected representatives. All it takes is one liberal nutcase and the will of the people is thwarted!

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Pobucker says... April 24, 2014 at 5:01 p.m.

Timothy Davis Fox is the elected Circuit Judge of the Sixth Division of the Sixth Judicial Circuit of the State of Arkansas. Fox was born and raised in Little Rock, Arkansas. He graduated from Hall High School in 1975 and attended Hendrix College, graduating with a B.A. in Political Science in 1978. He attended law school at the University of Arkansas, receiving a Juris Doctorate degree in 1981.
In 2007 Fox wrote and produced a multimedia presentation entitled “From Marbury to Cooper: Judicial Independence and the Rule of Law.” The program addressed the role of the Arkansas legal community and the judicial system in the resolution of the 1957 Central High School crisis. Since its presentation at the 2007 Arkansas Bar Association Annual Meeting the multimedia presentation has been performed on over than thirty occasions in more than six states.
A filing in a Lonoke County divorce case bears on the runoff for state Supreme Court between Appeals Court Judge Karen Baker and Pulaski Circuit Judge Tim Fox.
The filing, a divorce counter-claim by Lonoke farmer Shane Hamilton, seeks divorce from his wife, Lauren, on ground that she'd been having an affair with Fox. Lauren Hamilton, who now practices with the Hilburn firm in North Little Rock, was a law clerk for Fox for two years and left for private practice about three years ago. The lawsuit was filed for Shane Hamilton by Kim Kelley, a Heber Springs lawyer, who until the May primary election was both a law clerk and campaign worker for Baker. She said she had not worked for Baker in either capacity since the primary.
Fox, who is married, would not comment directly on the allegation. "I've just always taken the position that personal family business is not open for public discussion — in an election year or a non-election year." He said he was aware of the filing, but had not reviewed it. He noted Kelley's past work for Baker and said he saw the filing as "another effort to draw attention away" from his campaigning about the amount of vacation time Baker and her staff took from work at the Court of Appeals

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AmericasDoomed says... April 24, 2014 at 5:13 p.m.

I guess the dead will get to vote Democrat again this year.

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Popsmith says... April 24, 2014 at 5:15 p.m.

I don't care to share my state with anyone who isn't willing to prove he is a resident. This smells political.

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JakeTidmore says... April 24, 2014 at 5:15 p.m.

A law which puts the lie to the oft-quoted phrase "land of the free, home of the brave" is struck down as it rightly should be. There was NO proof of voter fraud to justify the law. Am tired of spineless cowards who backed this law. Take the yellow stripes off your back and give them to the highway department where they can be put to better use dividing our roads instead of dividing our people.

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TheBatt says... April 24, 2014 at 5:16 p.m.

ONE. Judge overrules the will of the people. We can see how he stands on the concept of vote integrity.

But let us get back to the grounds for his decision- by his thinking, EVERYTHING that requires ID is now illegal.

Next time a police officer demands to see your ID, just mention "Judge Fox".

Next time the pharmacy asks for your ID, just say "Judge Fox!"


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FarmBoy says... April 24, 2014 at 5:17 p.m.

Crooked Lawyers don't like to do what the people want. They want the dead people and illegal alians to vote for the wrong people. Politicians buy votes all the time and this makes it easier.

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ARK1MXG says... April 24, 2014 at 5:20 p.m.

I will not vote for him again :(

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GrimReaper says... April 24, 2014 at 5:21 p.m.

A cunning fox he is...................

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Pobucker says... April 24, 2014 at 5:22 p.m.

Don't be complaining about the judge. He knows who elected him. What do you expect?
Although, if he issued this opinion last week, he might not of been elected....oops, something is showing. Kinda like the great American hero, BARRACK! - who just keeps puttin' stuff off until after an election....oh...a pattern.

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