Today, Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson issued his long-awaited decision concerning Pennsylvania’s controversial legislation requiring voters to show identification before being able to vote. Specifically, Judge Simpson preliminarily enjoined the Commonwealth (and election officials) from requiring voters to show ID prior to being permitted to vote.
The decision, in Applewhite v. Commonwealth, is extremely important (regardless where you stand on the issue, particularly with the presidential election just weeks away (on November 6, 2012) and with Pennsylvania considered a crucial state in the battle for the White House. What is surprising is that the decision was issued as a “Memorandum Opinion” and “Opinion Not Reported,” which means that the decision has no precedential value. Perhaps the Court will reconsider and determine that the Opinion has precedential value.