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Vote Swapping Web Sites Sue State

A federal appeals court in San Francisco has reinstated a free-speech lawsuit brought by operators of several vote-swapping Web sites. The sites are suing the state of California.

The Web sites appeared before the 2000 general election. Their operators tried to create a system that allows users in one state to trade their vote for president to someone in another state. Three sites voluntarily shut down before the election after California threatened to sue them. State officials said the sites violated state election laws.

The sites claim California violated their First Amendment right to free speech. They´re also seeking an injunction barring the state from taking similar action in next year´s election.