Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Election Law – Voting Rights and Electoral Conflict

Today we will be highlighting some of our newer print resources on the dynamic field of law that has arisen from election day conflicts and issues. Often, legal conflicts concerning the parameters of election contests arise even before a vote is cast. The right to vote, and what that means and entails, is an important topic that is debated frequently in this legal field.  We have many resources in our collection, in print and digital, that address this topic.

Here are two of our newer secondary sources on this burgeoning area of law:

Bending Toward Justice : The Voting Rights Act and The Transformation of American Democracy (2013)
Written by Gary May

The history of the Voting Rights Act, from the events leading to its conception to its present day fate, are discussed in this text.

Inside Bush v. Gore (2013)
Written by Charley Wells

Written by the former Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court, this book is a historical account from the author’s perspective of the vote recount in Florida after the 2000 Presidential election.

Election Day is next week! If you're registered and able, remember to vote on November 5th.

This is the last post in our series about election law. Check back next month for our series on a new topic.

In the meantime, keep calm and read on.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Election Law – Free State Law Resources

 In this post, we are highlighting some free resources to study New York State election law.

Election law is a complex byzantine of rules and regulations at every level of government. Election law in New York State is only further complicated by the many levels of government that exist as governing authorities. “There are 1607 general purpose local governments in New York State, each with its own governing body and taxing authority.”*

To start to familiarize yourself with New York State election law, you can start at the New York State Board of Elections website: The New York State Board of Elections has a page specifically devoted to setting forth the New York statutes and regulations in effect for this upcoming election day:   At this website, you can find:

You can, of course, explore more about election law in subscription databases, but free resources are great to know about and keep handy. Check back soon for our next blog post to highlight resources on this topic.

In the meantime, keep calm and read on.

* NYS Government. NYS Division of Local Government Services. Retrieved October 28, 2013, from

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Election Law – New Digital Resources

Digital resources are great for a fast-changing field of law such as election law, and you can find those in our collection, as well.

To keep up-to-the-minute informed about legal issues where politics and finance intersect, such as campaign finance, lobbying, and government ethics issues, consider BNA’s e-newsletter, The Money and Politics Report.  You can access this database by clicking here and scrolling to the link for Money and Politics Report.

You can also find digital resources in our collection by searching our online catalog. For example, just after last year’s Election Day, a hearing was held before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, entitled: “The State of the Right to Vote After the 2012 Election.” You can view the transcript of that hearing online here.

In January 2012, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a report detailing the results of its study about the feasibility of holding federal elections over a weekend instead of on the traditional Tuesday. You can access that report here.

Our reference librarians and circulation staff can assist you in finding more digital resources – we’d be happy to help! Check back soon for our next blog post to highlight resources on this topic.

In the meantime, keep calm and read on.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Election Law – New Print Resources

In this post, we are highlighting some of our newer print resources on general election law.

Election law has become increasingly complex, as our politics have become more partisan and our electorate more diverse. There are several, newer print resources in our collection that are a great introduction to this field of law:

Goldfeder’s Modern Election Law (2013)
Written and edited by Jerry H. Goldfeder ; Additional Contributors: Daniel M. Burstein, et al.

This resource is frequently consulted by experts in the field, and it is a hot commodity in libraries around this time of year. We have the most recent supplement (2013) on the shelves. 

America Votes!: A Guide to Modern Election Law and Voting Rights (2012)
Edited by Benjamin E. Griffith

This guide, published by the American Bar Association, addresses the election law questions which are currently or imminently about to be addressed by the courts.

Election Law In a Nutshell (2013)
Written by Daniel P. Tokaji

Part of the popular “Nutshell” series published by West, this book provides introductory insight to the growing and complex field of election law.

These resources are just the latest of the print resources you can consult in our collection to introduce yourself to election law. Check back soon for our next blog post to highlight resources on this topic.

In the meantime, keep calm and read on.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Election Law – The New York City 2013 Electoral Race

As many of you are aware, the New York City electoral race is a hot ticket right now. The Office of the New York City Mayor is up for election, with a new mayor to be elected to succeed Mayor Michael E. Bloomberg, a three-term holder of that position. The two candidates in the running are Mr. Bill deBlasio, a Democrat, and Mr. Joe Lhota, a Republican.

The candidates squared off for the first of three Tuesday night debates earlier this week, and you can see a live fact checking chat that the New York Times ran simultaneously with the debate here. The New York Times is also offering e-mail alerts as news occurs in the New York Mayoral contest. You can sign up and follow the election race here:

Residents of New York City will also have the opportunity to elect a new New York City Comptroller and New York City Public Advocate, all five Borough Presidents, and seats on the New York City Council.

If you are a resident of New York City, you can find out exactly who’s on your ballot by visiting the "Who's on Your Ballot?" website: and entering your address. (Your address will not be stored.) The site is under the auspices of a not-for profit project of the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. It also provides updates on the election contest and useful links to election resources, including the New York City and New York State Board of Elections.

Check back soon for our next blog post to highlight resources on this topic.

In the meantime, keep calm and read on.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

New Exhibit: Paula Isenberg ~ A View into the Holocaust

An inspirational exhibit was recently opened at the Gould Law Library, entitled: “Paula Isenberg ~ A View into the Holocaust.” Using original artifacts, books, and documents from Mrs. Isenberg’s life, the exhibit shows how a brave young woman directly participated in the trial of 31 defendants accused of committing war crimes at the first and the largest concentration camp in Germany, called the Buchenwald Camp. During the Holocaust, this camp housed thousands of alleged political prisoners and over 4,000 Jews, including Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel. After enlisting in the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps in 1943, Paula was assigned as a court reporter to the 7708 War Crimes Group in 1947. As a court reporter, she directly witnessed the criminal trials of 31 officers of the Buchenwald Camp. After returning to the United States and retiring from her civilian career as a court reporter, Paula shared her experience at programs and presentations for children and adults, so the memory of her experience would not be lost. At the exhibit, you can see many original artifacts and documents from Mrs. Isenberg’s service to the 7708 War Crimes Group and her presentations and programs made long after her service.

Please take some time to explore the important history of Paula Isenberg, at the Third Floor Exhibit case, next to the Rare Books Room. You can also explore an article about Mrs. Isenberg published in Verve magazine in 2010 here, or register to view Mrs. Isenberg’s video testimony provided to the Survivors of Shoah Visual History Project here. In addition to seeing the original artifacts provided to the exhibit, you can view online artifacts that Mr. and Mrs. Isenberg donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum here.

Article Consulted for this Post:

Verve-acious (2010, July 29). For the Record. VERVE Magazine | Asheville's Magazine for Women | News | Fashion | Food | Events - Current Issue. Retrieved October 16, 2013, from

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Want to Win a $25 Gift Card to iTunes? 2013 Legal Trivia Contest Open!

Want to Win a $25 Gift Card to iTunes?

Enter the 2013 “Ghouls and Gould” Law Library Trivia Contest!

The Gould Law Library is offering all students a chance to win a $25 iTunes gift card!

To win, all you have to do is come to the Law Library Circulation Desk and pick up an official entry form. There are three legal trivia questions to answer. For every question correctly answered, your name will be entered as an official entry into a drawing. You only need to answer one question to enter, but if you answer all three, you get three entries to win! Each answer equals one entry.

Return your entry to the Circulation Desk. The contest closes at 8:59 p.m. on October 30, 2013. On October 31, 2013, a winner will be selected by the Gould Law Library Staff through a lottery drawing of official entries. The prize awarded will be a $25 gift card to iTunes.

Have fun! Good luck!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Election Law – The New York State 2013 Judicial Election Race

Although it is considered an off-year election, several important races are taking place in our area.

In addition to the proposal on the ballot to raise the mandatory retirement age of state judges, which would allow them to serve to the age of 80, many of the seats of our state judges are also up for election. A list of the candidates for Supreme Court has recently been released by New York State, which you can view here:

Considering the number of judicial seats up for election, if you are interested in the history of the judicial election process, you might consider reading this newly published book: 
The People's Courts : Pursuing Judicial Independence In America (2012)

Written by Jed Handelsman Shugerman

Mr. Shugerman of Harvard Law School has published a well-researched and readable book on the history of the appointment and election of judges, and how those contests have become increasingly challenged over the years.
Check back soon for our next blog post to highlight resources on this topic.

In the meantime, keep calm and read on.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Election Law – The New York State 2013 Ballot

Welcome back to our series on Gould Law Library resources! In this month’s posts, we will be highlighting some of our resources on election law, in recognition of Election Day, November 5th, which is just around the corner.

It’s always important in this field to know what issues and elected positions are at issue in any given election year.

This year, there are several proposed amendments to the New York State Constitution. You can learn about them here: These proposed amendments would, if enacted by the people of New York, allow for:
  • Legalized gambling in New York State and the establishment of up to seven casinos
  • Veterans with combat-related disabilities to be granted extra points in their application for civil service job promotions
  • Municipalities to continue exceeding their debt limits for sewage facilities
  • The resolution of a land dispute and a land exchange in the Adirondack forest preserve
  • The mandatory retirement age of all state judges to be raised to 80 years old
No matter your stance on these amendments, it is important to exercise your right to vote if you hold that right. For reference, you can check if you are registered to vote in New York State here:

For information about registering to vote in New York State, visit: A mailed application must be postmarked no later than October 11th (just three days away) in order to register to vote in this year’s general election.

Check back soon for our next blog post to highlight resources on this topic.

In the meantime, keep calm and read on.