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Three unions sue Florida over provisional ballots

The Miami Herald reports: In yet another election-year skirmish over voting, several unions went to Florida's highest court on Tuesday and asked it to strike down a law that requires people who use provisional ballots to cast them in the right precinct.

The AFL-CIO, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, and the Service Employees International Union called on the court to consider in time for the November elections whether state laws governing provisional ballots violate the state Constitution.

The lawsuit, filed against Secretary of State Glenda Hood as well as local election officials in Leon County, asks the court to order state officials to tell elections supervisors that all provisional ballots cast within a county should be counted on Election Day.

A provisional ballot is given to a voter whose name doesn't appear on voting rolls but who insists he is legally registered to vote. The ballots were authorized by state legislators in 2001 as a response to complaints that many people were wrongfully turned away by poll workers during the 2000 presidential election.

But despite the strong objections of some lawmakers, such as Rep. Chris Smith of Fort Lauderdale, legislators mandated that the provisional ballots won't count unless the voter casts his ballot in the right precinct. -- Group of unions sues state over provisional ballot law (Herald.com)