August 27, 2015

Indianapolis – The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana is challenging a state law that took effect on July 1 that makes it a potential felony for Hoosiers to take a picture of their election ballot or to share it on social networks, saying the law violates the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

“Taking a picture of one’s ballot and sharing it with family and friends is an expression of pride and enthusiasm about voting, and is a form of political speech that must be protected,” said ACLU of Indiana Legal Director Ken Falk. “This law, which is a content-based regulation of speech, deprives Hoosiers of this fundamental right and is unconstitutional.”

The lawsuit, brought on behalf of members of the ACLU of Indiana who wish to take and share pictures of their ballots seeks to stop enforcement of Indiana Code 3-11-8-17.5 and to prevent anyone who takes a ballot “selfie” from being arrested. A core function of the ACLU of Indiana is to protect the rights of free speech and expression guaranteed by the Constitution.

The case Indiana Civil Liberties Union Foundation, Inc., d/b/a American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana v. Indiana Secretary of State, et al., Case 1:15-cv-1356-SEB-DML was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, on August 27, 2015.

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