Sunday, July 27, 2003

More electoral board members mad at Virginia Attorney General

The Washington Post has this article on the criticism of electoral board members of the Attorney General's opinion limiting their political activity.

As discussed here previously, by law, the majority of every electoral board in Virginia is of the same party as the Governor (who is not of the same party as the Attorney General).

Years ago, when the governor's office changed hands from the Republican John Dalton to the Democrat Charles Robb in 1982, the next year in accordance with Virginia, the partisan makeup of all the electoral boards changed, and a number of the boards more or less fired their registrars, and replaced them with Democrats. This had been done before, I'm told, in the time of the Republican governors as well. But, in the 1980s, a group of the ousted Republican registrars filed suit, claiming that they could not be denied reappointment on account of their political affiliation, and the Fourth Circuit agreed, in the case of McConnell v. Adams, 829 F.2d 1319 (4th Cir. 1987), in which the Court also held that since this was new law, the electoral board members individually would be entitled to qualified immunity. One of those plaintiffs was Willie Mae Kilgore, the mother of Jerry Kilgore and Terry Kilgore, and following her reinstatement by the courts, she is still to this day (last I heard) the registrar of voters for Scott County. The lawyer who argued the case on appeal for the registrars against the electoral boards was William Hurd, who is now the Solicitor General for the Commonwealth.

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