Volume 1, Issue 1 (2009) Fall 2008 - Election Law: Legislation and Controversies

Editor's Welcome - November 4, 2008

Dear Readers,

Thank you for your interest in the Legislation and Policy Roundtable, a recently established student publication and panel series at the American University Washington College of Law. Our goal is to provide a legal analysis of current legislative initiatives and policies through our electronic publication and to encourage meaningful debate through our Roundtable Live panel series.

Since the 2000 elections, Congress passed significant reforms to fundraising practices, permissible voting technology, and voter registration procedures. When implementing these reforms, the practical difficulties of simultaneously ensuring all voters have access to the polls while protecting against voter fraud became evident. As a country, we continued to debate the utility of public financing, the role of the Internet, and the necessity of the Electoral College. These issues have played an important role in the campaigns leading up to today’s elections and likely will continue playing a role in future elections. We hope you find this issue of the Legislation & Policy Roundtable publication to be a useful resource on election law and an important contribution to the ongoing debates about election law reform.

Creating this new publication and panel series has required a great deal of time, dedication, and patience by all involved. I am extremely thankful to Lauren Gilius and Elizabeth Chernow, who have been invaluable as co-founders in creating the Legislation and Policy Roundtable. The Roundtable would not exist without their vision and endless enthusiasm. We are also thankful to Patrick Renckly, our publications editor, for his incredible attention to detail and extremely hard work in developing the Roundtable’s inaugural publication. Our publication would not be possible without our diligent editors and writers, whose passion for politics and incredible talent have made this initial publication a success. Finally, we are all thankful to Professor Jamin Raskin, our advisor and mentor, for his endless guidance and support.

For more information, we welcome you to join us for a Roundtable Live panel discussion on “How Efforts at Combating Fraud and Disenfranchisement Impacted the 2008 Election,” at 12:00 noon on Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at the American University Washington College of Law. We also invite you to watch the podcast from our last Roundtable Live panel discussion on campaign finance reform, organized by former Roundtable Live Director Adam Hark, on our website. Adam’s work as Roundtable Live Director and moderator set the standard at our first panel discussion by encouraging the highest level of debate. We anticipate a similarly fascinating debate, organized by current Roundtable Live Director Kellen Clemons, during this semester’s event.

Thank you again for being a part of our inaugural issue.


Tiana M. Butcher



Editorial Board

Tiana Butcher
Administrative Director
Elizabeth Chernow
Staff Director
Lauren Gilius
Publication Director
Patrick Renckly
Roundtable Live Director
Kellen Clemons
Senior Editors
Benjamin Kinder
Benjamin Verney
Staff Writers
Jordan Acker
Steven Gassert
Ross Schulman
Gabriel Zitrin