Federal Court Hands Arkansas Voters a Victory

Non-Partisan Redistricting Allowed to Collect Signatures Safely During COVID-19 Pandemic

For immediate Release
May 26, 2020

Contact: George Shelton
(479) 236-7473 or
info@arvotersfirst.org

Fayetteville – U.S. District Court for the Western District of Arkansas ruled that signature collection for non-partisan redistricting could resume under new guidelines that protect the health and safety of Arkansas voters. 

“We are relieved that the Federal Court saw the danger in collecting signatures under the current pandemic and sought to give voters a safe way to exercise their constitutional rights,” said Bonnie Miller, lead plaintiff and President of the Washington County League of Women Voters. “This ruling will allow Arkansans the right to vote on this incredibly important issue. That is all we have asked from the very beginning of this campaign.” 

Under the court ruling, Arkansas Voters First will be able to collect signatures without requiring a witness. This ruling makes requirement of notarization by a notary public unnecessary. Voters will be allowed to sign the petition at their home and mail it in, without having to interact with a canvasser and risk their health. 

“This court victory ensures that we have the chance to bring fairness to the redistricting process,” said Brett Kincaid, Campaign Manager for Arkansas Voters First. “This is a victory for democracy. Arkansans overwhelmingly believe that people should pick their politicians, politicians shouldn’t be deciding who their voters are which the current redistricting process allows.” 

Arkansas Voters First is working to ensure all processes for collecting signatures follow the rigorous guidelines set out by the court. “We expect to be up and running by the end of the week,” said Kincaid. “This is only a step, though. We still have work to do, but we are confident now that all Arkansas voters will get their say in November. We will get it done.” 

# # # 

For additional information, contact George Shelton at 479-236-7473 or by email at info@arvotersfirst.org.