Firm Scores Win in Suit Against Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity and Commission Dissolution Announced

January 4, 2018

On December 22, 2017, the Firm secured a significant victory for Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap when a federal judge ruled that Secretary Dunlap cannot be excluded from participating in the work of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity (PACEI) on which he serves as a member. Together with American Oversight, Patterson Belknap filed the lawsuit in November.

According to a press release issued by American Oversight, “The ruling from Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia largely agreed with Secretary Dunlap's argument that he has a fundamental right as a member of the commission to participate in the commission's work and he must be given access to substantive commission documents. The order indicated that the court found it necessary to intervene given the commission's previous exclusion of Sec. Dunlap and noted that Sec. Dunlap had attempted to participate in the past. The opinion rejected the arguments made by the PACEI that it could deny Dunlap access to certain documents, stating that the government's position was ‘indefensible’ and ‘ignores the law.’”

On January 3, 2018, less than two weeks after the Firm prevailed on its preliminary injunction motion, President Trump disbanded the Commission. To read The New York Times’ coverage of the January 3rd announcement, click here. To read additional press coverage, click here.

To read more about the December 22 ruling, click here.

To read the December 22 opinion, click here.