Advancement Project’s National Office Successfully Files Election Day Missouri Litigation Mandating Election Officials Accept Approved Voter Identification

November 6, 2018

Zerline Hughes Spruill

Court order prevents election officials from asking
registered voters for photo ID

St. Louis – Advancement Project national office successfully filed an emergency writ of mandamus – an order to follow the law – against the St. Charles County’s Director of Elections. Our lawyers who were on the ground throughout Missouri were contacted by dozens of voters in St. Charles County regarding the violation of an October 23, 2018 state-wide court order preventing election officials from requiring voters to produce photo identification and directing them to accept those identifications listed the statute and Judge Callahan’s order and judgment.

“It is our mission to advocate for free, fair and accessible elections. We’re pleased that our litigators were on the ground, able to make a difference for voters in St. Charles County, and throughout Missouri,” said Denise Lieberman. “The court’s order shows that election officials are accountable and responsible for ensuring compliance with the law on Election Day. They have to be accountable to ensure poll workers are complying with the law. Poll workers were telling voters who tried to assert their rights, were saying ‘we don’t agree with that ruling’. They don’t have a choice. Election officials are going to be accountable.”

“We began to receive complaints from voters early in the day. We ended up getting complaints from at least 23 precincts,” said Jennifer Kovar, one of the volunteer attorneys with the Election Protection effort. “These were not isolated incidents, but pervasive and widespread violations of the law.”

“We brought this court case to hold St. Charles County officials accountable for their flagrant violations of the court order,” Grant Doty, volunteer lawyer with the Election Protection program.


Advancement Project is a multi-racial civil rights organization. Founded by a team of veteran civil rights lawyers in 1999, Advancement Project was created to develop and inspire community-based solutions based on the same high quality legal analysis and public education campaigns that produced the landmark civil rights victories of earlier eras.