Supreme Court Rejects Kansas And Arizona Voter Suppression Efforts

protect the vote

By a 7-2 margin on Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to consider the case Kobach v. U.S. Election Assistance Commission, which would have required voters to show proof of citizenship to vote in federal elections. The court’s decision upholds a federal appeals court ruling and affirms the right of the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) to reject unnecessary and burdensome requirements that make it more difficult for people to vote.

The EAC has maintained that requiring prospective voters to swear they are U.S. citizens under penalty of perjury is a sufficient safeguard to preserving the integrity of elections. The commission contends that requiring excessive documentation of citizenship erects unnecessary logistical hurdles to voting.

Arizona and Kansas are still allowed to demand proof of citizenship on state election forms, but the court’s decision makes it possible for voters to still fill out a federal form to vote in Presidential and Congressional elections without first having to provide documentation of their citizenship status. Those voters are still required to be U.S. citizens and they must sign an affidavit swearing they are citizens.

The League of Women Voters and other non-partisan voting rights groups had urged the Supreme Court to reject the claims of Arizona and Kansas. They argued that requiring voters to supply a birth certificate or a passport has the effect of disenfranchising college students, the poor, the elderly, and others who might not have ready access to such documentation. In effect, such laws reduce voter turnout.

Republicans seeking to win elections by suppressing turnout expressed disappointment with the court’s decision. Although neither state has been able to demonstrate that non-citizens are falsely signing affidavits and voting illegally in large numbers, Republicans continue to try to frame the issue as one of voter fraud rather than voter suppression.

The Arizona and Kansas plans are essentially solutions without a problem. Though their is no credible evidence that a significant number of non-citizens are voting illegally in either state, both red states chose to add extra requirements for voting, in order to reduce turnout and thereby maximize the GOP’s advantage.

Keeping non-citizens from voting as the law requires, is something that needs to be enforced. However, there is no reason that the efforts to achieve that goal should also involve disenfranchising a number of citizens who do not have easy access to birth certificates or passports. Seven of the nine members of the Supreme Court agreed, perhaps recognizing that the GOP’s efforts are more designed to disenfranchise legal citizens than they are aimed at keeping non-citizens from voting.

If you’re ready to read more from the unbossed and unbought Politicus team, sign up for our newsletter here!

24 Replies to “Supreme Court Rejects Kansas And Arizona Voter Suppression Efforts”

  1. They will bitch and they will moan. And in the end they will attempt another run around- again, for this one time.
    Kansas Dennis Rader

    Arizona Arpaio.

  2. North Carolina, Texas, You assholes are next. They’re coming to get you. Just a bad week for the Roaches. Raid out of DC, just exterminating the nest.

  3. I’m surprised it was by such a large margin. Let me guess, the two dissenters were Scalia and Thomas. Republicans can’t win fairly. Their whole agenda is geared to destroying the middle class and turning this country into a third world one. They know the only way they can win is to cheat.

  4. LMFAO, Note to the GOP, if YOU gotta cheat to win, maybe the product you’re selling just isn’t any DAMN good! I was a victim of gerrymandering back in 2012, my polling station was literally a 8 minute walk from my apartment, so I stood in line for well over a hour and a half, just to be told “MY” NEW polling station was 10 miles further up the road!! LOL the GOP is so full of $HIT! it isn’t even funny! and people actually wonders WHY many americans don’t even bother to vote!!

  5. I too was surprised by the number. Seven-two?? over- whelming!!Should tell the thugs something, like.. the Court does not like voter suppression. Which in it’s self is a surprise with this court.

  6. I would like to find out who voted for this in my state legislature. so I can vote for someone else. How can I do that? I live in AZ

  7. I’ve said for years that the gop can’t win if they don’t cheat and SCOTUS confirmed my claim. Time to make ALL elections fair and legal.

  8. In MI we have a website called Michigan Votes. It’s a WONDERFUL site–you can see exactly who (House and Senate reps) voted for which proposal. I would think AZ has a similar site.

    There are links to the actual proposal language, you can mark certain reps and receive info on their votes or you can receive email notices on topics like women’s issues, animal rights, environment, etc., and there are links to the reps’ emails so you can let them know what you think. All free!

  9. I too live in AZ. I have found the easiest way is to simply do as DJ says, “don’t vote Republican” no matter the office. There are times, there are no alternatives to the single Republican candidate, however just don’t vote Republican. Our politicians, particularly the Republican affiliated ones, are very much beholden to ALEC and to the Center for Arizona Policy (CAP), an extreme fundamentalist group run by Cathi Herrod. Both of those political action groups propose a plethora of highly restrictive legislative bills which are actively supported by a majority of our State Legislature. Our State Legislature does not have a good track record listening to the ordinary citizen, but they do as ALEC and CAP wants them to do. Get involved too, if you have the time and the desire, with the Democratic Party. We have a huge uphill battle in this state just to have the “non-Republican” voice be heard.

  10. I’ve lived here in Az for 25 years..as an eternal optimist I believe eventually everyone will come around and see the corporepublicans for what they are and vote Democrat or Independent. One can dream.

  11. Just another proof that the Republicans are on the wrong side of Everything. Proves that they DO Cheat to Win!

  12. Sorry, but it isn’t Republicans who are known for voting the graveyard. :-) In any case, one needs an ID to open a bank account, or to buy cigarettes or alcohol (I got carded twice in the past week at age 53, btw), so why not carding for the infinitely more significant opportunity to vote?

  13. I AM SO OVER JOYED IT IS HARD TO CONTAIN MYSELF.

    I HAVE PROMISED MYSELF I WOULD LEAVE MY JOB AND WORK TO GET PEOPLE REGISTERED NO MATTER WHAT IT TOOK IN THIS NEXT BIG ELECTION.

    AND NOW I DO NOT HAVE TO BECAUSE MY COUNTRY IS AGAIN
    THE WONDERFUL PLACE WE ALWAYS BELIEVED IT TO BE.

    WE ARE COMING BACK.

  14. YOU DON’T GET IT. YOU MAY NOT KNOW THE UNFAIR AND MONUMENTAL TASKS ASKED OF SO MANY PEOPLE EVEN THOUGH THEY WERE BORN AND LIVED IN THIS COUNTRY.
    MAYBE YOU DID NOT KNOW WHO THE OBVIOUS TARGETS WERE

    OR MAYBE YOU DO KNOW HOW CRUEL THESE PROPOSED VOTER ID LAWS WERE AND YOU ARE JUST ACTING NAIVE.

    WHICH IS IT

  15. Nobody’s voted graveyard since 1976. Look up why. When you have a federally enforceable sworn document to sign re alcohol and other consumption items, then you won’t be carded. For voting you have to register and swear it’s not fraud, and if it IS, the feds swoop down on you. Now, if you go to the same place each time for your cigs and booze, and they have your signature on file and have you sign the legally-enforceable agreement that you’re duly registered to vote legally, then you wont’ need to show ID. Ever again.

    Only fraud we’ve found lately? Double voting by GOP folks. Look that up, too So I’d be fine with scrutinizing white registered Republicans a lot more heavily.

  16. There will be no tally of who voted for or against this as the SCOTUS rejected the case. They did not issue a decision that would be published, they simply chose not to hear the case, thereby allowing the lower court ruling to stand.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.