Tuesday, 12 February 2019

Kamala Harris Lawyer on the Board of Group Leading $30M Voting Effort for 2020

Priorities USA to 'expand voter rights' with litigation challenges

The top campaign lawyer for Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris (Calif.) sits on the board of one of the largest liberal groups undertaking a massive $30 million effort to "expand voter rights" leading up to the 2020 elections.

Priorities USA Action, a Washington, D.C.-based group that threw its weight behind Hillary Clinton throughout the 2016 presidential cycle, announced that it will put tens of millions of dollars behind an effort to "fight Republican-backed laws that restrict ballot access," the Associated Press reports.

Guy Cecil, chairman of Priorities USA, told the AP that most of the money will go towards litigation and that the group will begin its efforts by focusing on Texas and Georgia. "We will look at where is the biggest harm being done and where our work can have the most impact," Cecil said.

Marc Elias, a partner at the D.C. office of the Perkins Coie law firm who acted as Clinton's top campaign lawyer, and who is now the top lawyer for the presidential campaign of Kamala Harris,quietly joined the board of Priorities USA's nonprofit arm in early 2017 to help the group lead its voter-related efforts. Elias was brought in as the group began to shift its focus to fighting state-level voter identification laws.

As part of the shift, Priorities absorbed Every Citizen Counts, a nonprofit created by Clinton allies that mobilized African American and Latino voters. The group announced at the time that it would build a national database to "serve as a one-stop inventory for restrictive voting measures" and would share that data with other progressive organizations.

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