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Citizens receive their early voting ballot at the Lancaster County Election Commissioner offices in Lincoln, Neb., on the first day of early voting, Monday, Oct. 10, 2016. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

A federal court extended Florida's voter registration deadline due to Hurricane Matthew



A federal court has extended Florida's voter registration deadline because of the interruptions in last-minute sign-ups Hurricane Matthew caused, according to CNN

The deadline was extended from Tuesday to 5 p.m. EST on Wednesday. 

The court ruling comes after the Florida Democratic Party sued, asking for the deadline to be extended because many of the state's voters would be "severely burdened" by the hurricane. 

Florida Gov. Rick Scott opposed the extension, citing that people had plenty of time to register. 

In court documents, Marc Elias, who works for Hillary Clinton's campaign, said Scott "unambiguously ordered" Florida residents to evacuate because of Hurricane Matthew and that could have prevented  people from being able to register before the deadline. 

According to CNN, Judge Mark E. Walker scheduled a Tuesday hearing to determine whether the deadline should be extended beyond Wednesday. 

He wrote that making sure aspiring eligible voters are registered is a fundamental element of our democracy. 

"Hurricane Matthew not only forced many of those voters to evacuate the state, but also foreclosed the only methods of registering to vote: in person or by mail," Walker wrote. 

"Because those aspiring eligible voters could not register, they could not vote in the upcoming election. As a result, Florida's statutory framework completely disenfranchises thousands of voters, and amounts to a severe burden on the right to vote."

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