PILF Argues Before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals

Published On: December 08th, 2023

The Foundation’s lawsuit alleges that by allowing public school children to elect a full voting student member to the school board a Maryland county is violating the 1st and 14th Amendments of the U.S. Constitution. 

(Richmond, VA) – December 8, 2023: Today, oral arguments will take place before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in a case filed by the Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF) on behalf of Howard County residents against the Board of Education of Howard County, MD.

This case implicates significant issues regarding the First Amendment’s Free Exercise Clause and the 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause. At issue is a child voting scheme that allows public school children in grades 6th-11th to elect a full voting student member of the Howard County Board of Education.

PILF filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of Lisa Kim, her son, and William Holland to challenge Howard County’s child voting scheme. By allowing school children to vote, the County is violating the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution by giving some students greater representation than adults. Additionally, by restricting the right to vote to only public-school children, the First Amendment rights of students who attend Catholic and other religious schools are being violated.

The District Court ruled against the Foundation, but it appealed the ruling to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.

WHAT:   Oral Arguments before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals

WHEN:   December 8, 2023 at 8:30AM

WHERE: Lewis F. Powell Jr. Courthouse & Annex

                1100 East Main Street, Suite 501

                Butzner Courtroom 201

                Richmond, VA 23219

“In the United States, you cannot give someone or a group of people greater representation than anyone else,” said PILF President, J. Christian Adams. “In Howard County, Maryland that is exactly what is happening. Children voting for school board have greater representation than adults. To make matters worse, the county has denied students who attend religious schools the right to vote in violation of the First Amendment.”

A live stream of the argument will be available here.

Prior case filings in Kim and Holland v. Board of Education of Howard County and documents can be found here. A factsheet breaking down the facts of the case is here.

The attorneys for the Public Interest Legal Foundation in this case are J. Christian Adams and Maureen Riordan.

Public Interest Legal Foundation
 (PILF) is the nation’s only public interest law firm dedicated wholly to election integrity. The Foundation exists to assist states and others to aid the cause of election integrity and fight against lawlessness in American elections. Drawing on numerous experts in the field, PILF seeks to protect the right to vote and preserve the Constitutional framework of American elections. PILF has brought lawsuits and won victories in Texas, Mississippi, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and across the United States.


For media inquiries, please reach out to Lbowman@publicinterestlegal.org

Public Interest Legal Foundation