Germantown nonagenarian at center of voter ID lawsuit under doctor’s orders to rest

Since May, Viviette Applewhite has been the most in-demand 93-year-old in Germantown, if not across the whole country.

Applewhite is the lead plaintiff in the lawsuit filed by the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union challenging the state’s controversial voter ID law.

The ACLU and other opponents argue that the law is unconstitutional and will disenfranchise thousands, including Applewhite.

As the face of the ACLU’s Commonwealth Court lawsuit, she has been inundated with interview requests from local and national media.

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Exhausting process

Though she has made it a personal point to tell her story, the whole thing has become a bit daunting at times.

“It’s fair to say that the attention has been a little overwhelming,” said Sara Mullen, associate director of the Pennsylvania ACLU. “I’ve been limiting the calls and the interviews.”

Applewhite, who is in a wheelchair, traveled to Harrisburg to testify last month. Not long afterwards, she was aboard a bus that was involved in an accident on Roosevelt Boulevard.

The collective toll of it all has left Applewhite with doctor’s orders to rest up, according to Mullen, who noted in an email to NewsWorks that the nonagenarian is not feeling “terribly well.”

Judge Robert Simpson is expected to hand down a decision any day now. An appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is almost guaranteed regardless of the ruling.

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