Law professor says Wednesday ruling may prevent vote to oust Ford - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Law professor says Wednesday ruling may prevent vote to oust Ford

The rush to vote to void the District 29 election and oust Senator Ophelia Ford has stalled. Senate Majority leader Ron Ramsey, the leader of the move to oust Ford, said Thursday he's not sure when he will be able to reintroduce a resolution to void the election.

"I think they can vote, but I think their hands are tied a little bit," said Lee Harris, a law professor at the University of Memphis.

Harris said Judge Bernice Donald's ruling does allow the senate to vote, but with time consuming restrictions. The senate must notify disenfranchised voters, and let them be heard. But Judge Donald's ruling doesn't say how that has to happen.

"She doesn't give a whole lot of guidance on what exactly they have to do," Harris said.

Harris said it's up to the Senate to figure out. But they should be careful according, to University of Memphis law professor Steve Mulroy, who represented Ophelia Ford in her efforts to stop the senate from voting.

"The judge's order is so explicit and so detailed, it ties them up in such a straight jacket," Mulroy said. "It's hard for me to see how under the current record they could oust senator Ford and still be in compliance with the judge's order."

Mulroy said if the senate does vote and doesn't follow Judge Donald's orders, Ford and the five voters will drag them back into court.

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