On August 20, U.S. District Court Judge William P. Johnson refused to dismiss the lawsuit Fleming v Gutierrez, 13-cv-222. The case had been filed on March 7, 2013, against election officials in Sandoval County, New Mexico, complaining that there were far too few voting machines and voting locations in Rio Rancho, New Mexico. The county election officials are Democrats, and Rio Rancho is a strongly Republican city. The case originally charged that several very close local elections might have turned out differently if Rio Rancho had had adequate voting procedures, because the lines at the polls were so long, and required waiting for as long as four hours, that some voters gave up and went home before voting.
This case is interesting because somewhat similar lawsuits have generally been filed by supporters of the Democratic Party, against Republican voting officials; this case is the reverse.
The county officials had argued the case should be dismissed, because the number of voting centers has been increased from four to seventeen for the 2014 election. But the decision says there is no guarantee the county won’t reduce the number in the future as soon as the lawsuit is dismissed, so the case remains open, probably for some sort of consent decree that will guarantee the larger number of voting centers in the future. See this story about the case.