AZ Groups Support DOJ Lawsuit to Block Registration Barrier
Wednesday, July 13, 2022
The U.S. Department of Justice wants to block an Arizona law that requires what its lawsuit calls "onerous documentary proof of citizenship" in order to register to vote.
Assistant Attorney General Kristin Clarke claims in the lawsuit that Arizona's bill violates the National Voter Registration Act and would prevent some eligible voters from getting onto the voter rolls for certain federal elections.
Regardless of the court's decision, said Alex Gulotta, director of the Arizona chapter of All Voting is Local, it won't affect voters this year - and wouldn't go into effect until the 2023 and 2024 elections.
"That bill has a new, documented proof-of-residence requirement," he said. "That basically means that folks that don't have an Arizona state-issued ID - that's snowbirds, students, lots of low-income people - are going to have a more difficult time registering to vote in the future."
Proponents of the law have said it would make elections more secure, but the DOJ complaint suggested it would pose an undue barrier, and that the current laws already verify that only citizens residing in Arizona vote in Arizona.
Meanwhile, Gulotta said, the Arizonans for Free and Fair Elections campaign recently submitted signatures to put a petition on the November ballot. It would create same-day voter registration and automatic voter registration, expand early voting, and also would allow people to deliver absentee ballots by mail to a polling place or to a dropbox for another voter, among other measures.
He said he thinks it's also important for voters to select candidates who support policies that make it easier to vote - not harder.
"The practical advice is check your registration. Make sure your registration is up-to-date. If there have been any changes, make sure that your address is correct," he said. "Vote, make a plan to vote, make sure that you and five of your friends and family members also vote."
The ballot campaign submitted more than 475,000 signatures. The proposal also would require election outreach to Native American tribes, ensure assistance for voters with disabilities, and reduce campaign contribution limits.
get more stories like this via email
By Jake Christie for Great Lakes Echo. Broadcast version by Mike Moen for Minnesota News Connection, reporting for Great Lakes Echo/Solutions …
By Gabes Torres for Yes! Media. Broadcast version by Kathryn Carley for Maine News Service, reporting for the YES! Media-Public News Service …
Tribal leaders from the eight federally recognized tribes in Utah gathered at a news conference at the state Capitol this week and called on state law…
Ohio's teachers are applauding the governor's recently announced plan to overhaul the state's reading curriculum for elementary schoolers and boost re…
As the economy has changed with the pandemic in the past few years, Indiana's small communities have seen an exodus of jobs and people. However…
By Lisa Held for Civil Eats. Broadcast version by Eric Tegethoff for Big Sky Connection, reporting for Civil Eats/Solutions Journalism/Public News …
Students who are also parents face more challenges getting through college, but support for these students is getting an upgrade at Bowie State …
Arizona State University, YouTube and the video channel Crash Course have announced a partnership to offer a series of online courses for college …