« VRA extension likely to pass | Main | Washington State: AG to appeal decision over felons' fines »

Rhode Island: judge bans investigation of Governor's campaign by election board

The Providence Journal reports: After castigating the state Board of Elections for not doing its job, a Superior Court judge yesterday permanently barred the board from investigating an alleged election-law violation by the Republican Party and Governor Carcieri's campaign before the 2002 election.

Judge Stephen J. Fortunato said that the board's years-long failure to make it clear to candidates and political organizations what they can and can't do and how the board would handle violations meant that the investigation trampled on the First Amendment and due process rights of the Republicans.

The underlying question of the case is whether the Republicans did anything wrong in 2002, when the state party got $250,000 from the Republican National Committee and used part of it to finance a pro-Carcieri TV commercial.

During several hours spent listening to arguments and questioning lawyers yesterday, Fortunato focused on the fact that while the state has laws governing the conduct and financing of elections, the Board of Elections has not, in his view, written and adopted rules and regulations that spell out what the laws mean and how the board intends to enforce them.

Some of the regulations are inadequate, he said, and some don't exist at all. -- Rhode Island news | projo.com | The Providence Journal | Local News

Thanks to James Bopp for the link.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)