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Appeals court docket: Postage for absentee ballots is now not always truly a poll tax

ATLANTA (AP) — A federal appeals court docket on Friday upheld a decrease court docket’s ruling that stated requiring voters to assemble their dangle stamps for mail-in ballots and ballotcapabilities does no longer amount to an unconstitutional poll tax.

The American Civil Liberties Union and its Georgia chapter filed a lawsuit in April 2020 asserting that Georgia’s postage requirement for absentee ballots and ballotcapabilities effectively imposes a poll tax and is therefore unconstitutional. The problem changed into as soon as precipitated behalf of voters and a community seeking to empower communities of shade, the Dark Voters Topic Fund.

“We rep that the proven reality that absentee voters in Georgia who think to vote by mail need to pay their dangle postage isn’t any longer a ‘tax’ or unconstitutional payment on balloting,” Circuit Capture Elizabeth Branch wrote in the belief for a 3-take panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

That affirmed an August 2020 ruling by U.S. District Capture Amy Totenberg in Atlanta.

“We’re upset in the . The ACLU of Georgia will proceed to protect the sacred elementary factual to vote,” ACLU of Georgia apt director Sean Younger stated. When asked in the event that they would charm to the U.S. Supreme Court, he stated, “All apt alternatives remain on the desk.”

Totenberg had acknowledged the aptitude difficulties of in-person balloting, namely all thru the coronavirus pandemic, nonetheless she stated that the proven reality that it’s on hand approach that the postage requirement isn’t any longer tantamount to an unconstitutional poll tax.

The 11th Circuit belief notes that Georgia voters can forged a ballotin two predominant solutions — in person or using the absentee job. They are able to vote in person on Election Day or all thru an early balloting length. Absentee voters can return their ballots by mail, put them in a fall box or bring them directly to the county election office.

“Whereas balloting in overall entails incidental charges love transportation, parking, exiguous one care, taking spoil day work, and —for folks that take to vote absentee by mail — the label of a postage ticket, these incidental charges develop no longer indicate that Georgia has imposed an unconstitutional poll tax or payment on its voters,” the 11th Circuit belief says.

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