The team led by voting rights lawyer Marc Elias has filed a new lawsuit against a newly enacted law in Iowa that drastically reduces access to voting. The law is one of a slew of pieces of legislation that Republican state leaders have put forward across the country as part of a systematic pattern of Republican attempts to curtail basic voting rights under the guise of security. In reality, there is no glaring gap in the security of U.S. elections along the lines of Republican claims, and restrictive election-related legislation that Republicans push often ends up significantly affecting voters from marginalized communities.
In Iowa, among other provisions, the new legislation shortens the early voting period from 29 days to just 20 days. Iowa Republicans claimed that the changes were needed to safeguard against fraud, but how on earth would shortening the early voting period even help protect against fraud? The only real effect would be decreasing opportunities for people to vote in person who might find it difficult to be free on Election Day. The Iowa legislation also orders the closure of polling places at 8 P.M. rather than 9 P.M., and it’s an insult for any Republican to pretend that the change has anything meaningful to do with preventing fraud.
Elias’s team summarized their new Iowa lawsuit as follows:
‘The case claims that the bill’s voting restrictions—including shortening the absentee voting period, reducing the number of days a voter can request and return an absentee ballot, shortening the time polls are open on Election Day and more—create an undue burden on the fundamental right to vote in violation of the Iowa Constitution.’
🚨BREAKING: On behalf of the @LULAC of Iowa, we have filed a lawsuit challenging Iowa's new voter suppression law. The voting restrictions in this law create an undue burden on the fundamental right to vote in violation of the Iowa Constitution. https://t.co/BAOXKYRLI1
— Marc E. Elias (@marceelias) March 9, 2021
Elias was involved in numerous post-presidential election court battles as ex-President Donald Trump and his allies tried to get the documented election results overturned. No court anywhere in the country ever even partially accepted the idea that widespread fraud was responsible for Joe Biden’s victory, no matter the fervency of Trump’s claims that he’d been robbed. The delusional idea that the election was rigged for Biden culminated in the January rioting at the Capitol, where Trump supporters tried to forcibly stop the formal Congressional certification of the election outcome.