Have a look at MS-Sen: The Hidden Race. Maybe there's another side to this story, but having read the statute, I rather doubt it.
This is the sort of behavior that supports the theory that the US is sliding into the sort of corrupt governance that used to be the hallmark of South American republics. Courts can cure many symptoms of the disease, and indeed may cure this one. But the deeper problem is the number of people in power, or grasping for power, who have neither honor nor scruples, neither shame nor any serious fear of consequences. And who's to say that this is not the better reading of the last decade's — or two decades' — history? OK, three decades.
(Do I hear four? five?)