State of New Hampshire

New Hampshire Election Day Registration Law Challenge (DNC)

Democratic National Committee v. Scanlan

Lawsuit filed on behalf of the Democratic National Committee and the New Hampshire Democratic Party against Acting New Hampshire Secretary of State David Scanlan (R) and New Hampshire Attorney General John Formella (R). The lawsuit challenges a Republican-enacted voter suppression law Senate Bill 418. The law requires voters who register to vote for the first time on Election Day, but who lack a valid photo ID, to vote on an affidavit ballot, which is then separated from other completed ballots. After the election, these voters have seven days to mail documentation establishing their identity to the secretary of state for their votes to be counted. If voters fail to do so, their votes will be discarded from the official election results and their names will be referred to the attorney general’s office for investigation. The plaintiffs allege that this law conflicts with the New Hampshire Constitution’s requirement that city and town clerks report the results of an election within five days of the election. The plaintiffs also allege that the law violates the New Hampshire Constitution’s Due Process Clause. The plaintiffs ask the court to declare that the law violates the New Hampshire Constitution and block the law.

On Jan. 29, 2024, the court allowed the Republican National Committee and the New Hampshire Republican State Committee to intervene in the case. On April 16, the court denied the plaintiffs’ motion for preliminary injunction and partially granted the Republican National Committee’s motion to dismiss. Only the plaintiffs’ Due Process Clause claim will proceed to trial.

STATUS: An appeal is ongoing in the New Hampshire Supreme Court. Litigation is also ongoing in the state trial court.

Case Documents

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