Tennessee AG: ban on ballot box selfies is constitutional

Friday, December 23, 2016, Vol. 40, No. 52

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee attorney general says a ban on snapping selfies at the ballot box is constitutional.

According to the Tennessean (http://tnne.ws/2ibEbML), Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III issued an opinion that the ban doesn't violate voters' free speech rights.

The 2015 law makes it a misdemeanor punishable by a $50 fine or up to 30 days in jail to shoot images inside a voting booth.

Slatery wrote that the ban is reasonable because a polling place isn't a public forum.

He wrote that the law ensures privacy of the ballot, speed and efficiency of the voting process, and integrity of elections, and prevents disruption and distraction for voters, voter intimidation, and interference and fraud in balloting.

Rep. G.A. Hardaway of Memphis, who requested the opinion, is urging the law's repeal.