Ed Miliband, who will become Prime Minister of the United Kingdom if the Labour Party wins the May 2015 election, says he has no interest in changing the voting system to ranked choice voting or proportional representation. See this story.
On Febraury 17, the Indiana House passed HB 1008. Among other things, it repeals the straight-ticket device. The vote was 59-35. All Democrats who voted, voted “No.” In addition, 8 Republicans voted “No”, but the bill still passed because Republicans have such a numerical advantage in the chamber.
The eight Republicans who voted “no” are: Randall Frye, Richard Hamm, Daniel Leonard, Jim Lucas, Peggy Mayfield, Jud McMillin, Rhonda Rhoads, and Thomas Saunders.
On March 2, the Florida House Rules Committee passed a bill that moves the presidential primary from March 1 to March 15. See this story.
On March 2, the U.S. Supreme Court heard Arizona State Legislature v Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission, 13-1314. Here is the Scotusblog analysis of how the argument went. The issue is whether Article One of the U.S. Constitution allows states to let governmental bodies other than the state legislature to draw U.S. House district boundaries. Here is the transcript of the hearing.
On March 2, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear ProtectMarriage.Com v Padilla, 14-434. This California case raised the question of whether proponents of a particular ballot initiative deserve to keep the names and addresses of their contributors secret. The initiative banned same-sex marriage. The proponents had evidence that individuals known to have supported that ballot measure were subject to harassment. Back in 1982, the U.S. Supreme Court had ruled that the Socialist Workers Party was entitled to such protection against disclosure.
Kansas HB 2108 would bring back the straight-ticket device, which was abolished in 1923. Even though the Secretary of State, Kris Kobach, supports the bill, it seems likely that it won’t pass. Other Kobach election law bills are moving ahead, such as his bill to restrict candidates from withdrawing. But the Kansas legislature’s web page shows that HB 2108 has been stricken from the House calendar.