The selfie craze stops at the voting booth, a Manhattan federal judge has ruled.
Judge Kevin Castel has upheld a 126-year ban on photographs in Big Apple voting booths, saying he agrees with officials from the state and city Elections Boards who argued that photographs risk slowing the voting process and being used as evidence in voter intimidation schemes.
The lawsuit was filed by three New Yorkers last year who claimed that their First Amendment rights were bring violated by the prohibition of photography in the ballot booth during the presidential election.
In court papers, they cited the fact that Donald Trump’s son Eric, who they called “a New York voter,” had tweeted a photo of his ballot on election day.
But Judge Castel rejected arguments that voters need to share photographic evidence of how they vote on social media, saying that the risks of doing this outweighs the rewards.
“Some voters will require multiple photographs to capture their ballot along with themselves in different poses, or repeated photographs,” the judge said. “Long waiting times tend to suppress voter turnout.”
The judge also sympathized with concerns that ballot selfies could be used in vote buying and voter intimidation schemes, including bosses demanding that workers present photographic evidence of how they cast their ballots.
“Preventing these evils and upholding the integrity of New York’s elections is a compelling state interest,” the judge said.