Justin Timberlake broke state law with voting booth ‘selfie’?

Singer Justin Timberlake may have run afoul of Tennessee law taking a picture of himself while voting in Shelby County, reports the Commercial Appeal. A state statue enacted by the Legislature in 2015 prohibits photos in polling places.

A spokesman for the District Attorney’s office initially told the newspaper the matter was “under review,” but later provided this comment instead: “While we are aware of an allegation that someone may have violated a Tennessee state election law, we have not been presented anything by an investigative authority.”

Timberlake, who lives in California and recently bought a spread near Nashville, posted a selfie on Instagram on Monday that showed him casting his ballot at the New Bethel Missionary Baptist Church in Germantown.

… “We’re thrilled Justin can’t stop the feeling when it comes to voting so much that he voted early in person and is promoting voting to his millions of fans,” said (Tennessee Secretary of State) spokesman Adam Ghassemi. “In Tennessee, using electronic devices inside polling locations to take pictures, videos or make calls is not allowed. We hope this encourages more people than ever to vote, but Tennesseans should only use their phones inside polling locations for informational purposes to assist while voting, like our free GoVoteTN mobile app. If polling officials discover someone violating this law they will ask the voter to put their phone away.”

An AP report on the matter includes this statement on voting selfies in other states: Federal courts have struck down bans in New Hampshire and Indiana, and on Monday, a judge in Michigan blocked enforcement of a ban on ballot selfies, saying it violates free speech.

Note: The Instanagram post is HERE – with commenters criticizing both him and the state law.

Memory Lane Note: Back in 2007, Timberlake was a Tennessee news topic when state legislators balked at adopting a resolution honoring his work (basically it was deemed too sexually oriented), which had been introduced by a Memphis senator. A Google search shows the resulting AP story is still online, HERE, for example.

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