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Vote-Swapping Web Sites And Free Speech

Law360 (November 16, 2007, 12:00 AM EST) -- In a decision that could have significant implications for the upcoming 2008 presidential election, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that California’s former secretary of state Bill Jones improperly threatened criminal prosecution against vote-swapping Web sites operating during the Bush-Gore 2000 presidential election. Porter v. Bowen, Case No. 06-55517 (9th Cir., Aug. 6, 2007) (Fisher, J.).

The Ninth Circuit explained, “Whether or not one agrees with these voters’ tactics, such efforts, when conducted honestly and without money changing hands, are at the...
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