When Arizona resident Mark Reed planned to vote while wearing a “Tea Party” t-shirt, government officials wanted to keep him out of the polls. The Goldwater Institute argued that Tea Party shirts were constitutionally protected free speech, no different than shirts promoting unions or other advocacy groups. The courts agreed, requiring election officials to use uniform, objective standards without violating the constitution.
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Goldwater t-shirt lawsuit on FOX NewsPosted on September 26, 2010 | Type: Video
Goldwater Institute attorney Diane Cohen and her client Diane Wickberg appeared live on Fox News' Fox and Friends to discuss Goldwater Institute's lawsuit against Coconino County and the Coconino County Recorder for refusing to let Mrs. Wickberg wear her Flagstaff Tea Party t-shirt to the polls when she tried to vote.
Tea Party t-shirt lawsuit on Fox NewsPosted on September 23, 2010 | Type: Video
Peter Johnson Jr. analyzed the Goldwater Institute's lawsuit on behalf of a woman who was forced to cover up her Tea Party t-shirt when she went to vote at a Flagstaff polling place.
Tea Party t-shirt wearer talks to KFYI's Jim SharpePosted on September 21, 2010 | Type: Audio
After Diane Wickberg was told by poll workers to cover up her Flagstaff Tea party t-shirt when she went to vote, the Goldwater Institute stepped in to defend her right to wear the shirt. Ms. Wickberg went on the air with KFYI's Jim Sharpe to explain what happened and to detail the lawsuit.
Wickberg v. OwensPosted on September 20, 2010 | Type: Case
In March 2011, Coconino County decided to settle the case. Specifically, Coconino County's new rules define electioneering to provide that only conduct that advocates for or against a candidate, a political party, or an issue on the ballot may be banned at the polling site. The County has also agreed to provide additional training to poll workers for objective enforcement of election laws and to protect against discrimination in the polling place.
Tea Party T-shirt Election LawsuitsPosted on September 20, 2010 | Type: Case
The Goldwater Institute has filed federal lawsuits on behalf of voters in Maricopa and Coconino counties to defend their right to vote while wearing clothing that refers to one or more “tea party” groups. The lawsuits aim to make sure county election officials use uniform and objective standards to enforce Arizona's electioneering laws without violating the constitutional rights of these and other voters in the future.