A Latino civil rights organization and an Iowa State University student filed a lawsuit calling the state’s new voter ID law unconstitutional and particularly burdensome for minority, disabled and elderly voters. The legislation at issue, House File 516, was passed on a party-line vote by the Republican-controlled Legislature and signed into law by former Iowa Governor Terry Branstad last year. It made a number of significant changes to the Hawkeye State’s voting laws, including a requirement that voters show a photo ID or an approved substitute ID at the polls, as well as new restrictions on absentee ballots and the elimination of straight-party voting. According to a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Polk County District Court, HF 516 “severely burdens and abridges Iowans’ fundamental right to vote.”
“It will prevent significant numbers of Iowans from exercising that right and make it more difficult for Iowans who successfully cast a ballot to do so,” the complaint continues.
Iowa State University student Taylor Blair and the League of United Latin American Citizens of Iowa claim that the law introduces unnecessary and burdensome voter ID requirements and imposes arbitrary and unjustified restrictions on popular voting practices, including in-person absentee voting.
They argue that the new voting restrictions violate several provisions of the Iowa Constitution, including equal protection and due process protections.
Full Article: Civil Rights Group Blasts Iowa’s Voter ID Law.