Wisconsin: Lawsuits aim to ease rules limiting Wisconsin college voters | Kayla Huynh/Wisconsin State Journal

On the day of the Wisconsin spring primary in February, Peter German was determined to vote. In between strained breaths, German — a freshman from West Bend attending UW-Madison — said he had been running from building to building in an attempt to cast his ballot. “I haven’t missed an election yet,” he said. The previous day, he tried to register to vote at the Madison City Clerk’s office with no luck. He lacked the required form of identification and documents under Wisconsin’s voter ID law, implemented in 2015 after a series of legal battles. On Feb. 18, Election Day, he again could not vote because he did not have a voter-compliant photo ID card. This sent German crisscrossing campus for nearly an hour, where he was finally able to cast his ballot — thanks to a freshly printed student voter card. As German learned, for students living away from home, Wisconsin is one of the most difficult states in which to vote. Student IDs issued by state colleges and universities in Wisconsin are not sufficient for voting, requiring students to go through additional hoops if they wish to vote using their college address.

North Carolina: Court bars college dorm students from voting in Greenville County, director says | Greenville Online

If a college student who lives on campus at Clemson University wants to register to vote in Pickens County, they can just fill out a voter registration form and list their campus housing as their legal residence. Same with students at the University of South Carolina or the College of Charleston or any number of colleges in South Carolina. But not in Greenville County. If a college student who lives on campus at Furman University or Greenville Technical College or Bob Jones University or North Greenville University wants to register to vote in Greenville County, they’re more than likely out of luck. That’s because those students must complete an 11-question form with answers that satisfy the county’s Board of Voter Registration and Elections. If they don’t return the form within 10 days, the board will reject their registration. If they don’t answer every question correctly with enough information to establish their residence in Greenville, the board will reject their registration.

North Carolina: Voter ID law goes back to court in North Carolina | Digital Journal

The voter ID provision of North Carolina’s controversial Voter Information Verification Act (VIVA) will be the subject of a hearing in federal court next week. Lawyers for both sides will return to court on October 23 to update U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Schroeder on negotiations meant to settle legal challenges to VIVA’s voter ID provision out of court, the Winston-Salem Journal reports. The photo ID requirement is one of the most controversial provisions of VIVA, a comprehensive overhaul of North Carolina voting law signed into law by Governor Pat McCrory on August 12, 2013. In its original form, the ID provision required voters to present one of eight state-approved photo IDs before casting a ballot, starting in 2016. Critics of the law have argued the photo ID requirement unfairly burdens poor, elderly, minority and student voters who are more likely to lack one of the eight approved IDs.

Ohio: Legislature Advances Controversial Bill That Could Deter Students From Voting | Huffington Post

Ohio’s Republican-controlled Senate passed a transportation budget Wednesday containing a controversial provision that critics say could dissuade college students from voting. The amendment to the budget, which was added at the last minute by a Senate committee, would require out-of-state students who register to vote from their campus address to register their cars in Ohio within 30 days and obtain state driver’s licenses. Completing both of those steps would cost over $75. If the more than 116,000 out-of-state students who attend Ohio’s public and private colleges and universities fail to do so, their out-of-state licenses would become invalid and they could face misdemeanor charges. Current law has allowed new Ohioans to claim residency and vote while keeping their out-of-state licenses and registrations because the state hasn’t specified a deadline for obtaining documentation.

Texas: Four Texas legislators push to make student ID acceptable as voter ID | The Daily Texan

Four Texas lawmakers are making voter turnout among college students a priority by proposing bills that would make university-issued ID cards an acceptable form of voter ID. The bills, filed in both the House and Senate by Rep. Terry Canales (D-Edinburg), Rep. Celia Israel (D-Austin), Sen. Carlos Uresti (D-San Antonio) and Sen. Kirk Watson (D-Austin), would allow students to present a university-issued photo ID as a valid form of voter ID. Watson said his bill, if passed, would make voting more convenient for students. “Those in control of the Capitol have created unnecessary burdens for folks who don’t already have an acceptable form of ID to vote,” Watson said in an email to the Texan. “This is an easy way to begin removing those burdens.”

Wisconsin: Tens of Thousands of Students Face New Voting Hurdles | PR Watch

The last-minute reinstatement of Wisconsin’s voter ID restrictions could create voting problems for over 32,000 students attending state universities. University-issued ID cards from most public universities will not be accepted as proof of identification at the polls, and tens of thousands of students will have to go through additional hurdles before election day if they want to exercise their right to vote. University students tend to vote for Democrats, and the voter ID law was pushed by Republican legislators. The impact on students is one other ripple in the shockwave that the 7th Circuit sent across Wisconsin last week, when a panel of appellate judges — all appointed by Republican presidents — reinstated Wisconsin’s voter ID law just seven weeks before election day. Federal district Judge Lynn Adelman had blocked the law in April as unconstitutional and violative of the Voting Rights Act. More than 32,000 students from out of state attend public universities in Wisconsin, and are eligible to vote in the state, yet cannot use a driver’s license from their home state to vote in November. Until the 7th Circuit’s decision last week, out-of-state students had little reason to spend the time and money to obtain a Wisconsin ID card.

Canada: Court battle begins over McGill students’ voting rights | CBC

The case of five McGill University students who were refused the right to vote in the Quebec election went before the court Thursday morning and should be decided on by Friday. Constitutional lawyer Julius Grey requested an emergency injunction to allow the students to vote because Thursday was the last day to make revisions to the list of electors before Quebecers go to the polls on Monday. Because the students will only find out after the revision deadline whether they can vote or not, a legal mechanism could be used to permit them to vote in the event that the judge rules in their favour. But the lawyer for the director general of elections argued that the revisors have some judicial and authoritative powers, and ruling against them could call into question the entire voter registration system.

North Carolina: Voter ID laws challenge out-of-state voters | The Pendulum

Junior political science major Niki Molinaro has voted in every election since she came to Elon University. But new North Carolina voter identification laws may keep her out of the voting booth. Although she considers Elon her home, Molinaro, an official New York resident, must present a North Carolina identification card at the polls if she wants to continue voting in North Carolina. The bill, passed August 2013, does more than require voters to show a government-issued ID at the polls. It also shortens the voting period by one week and ends same-day voter registration. This is particularly a problem for university students who use their college ID cards as a form of identification at the polls. Beginning in 2016, they will no longer be considered acceptable. “I think the new law is meant to keep certain groups of people out of the elections,” Molinaro said.

Florida: State nixes UF student union as early voting site | Miami Herald

Election supervisors and the League of Women Voters have a new complaint with Gov. Rick Scott and the Legislature over early voting. After years of complaints by supervisors who struggled with historically long lines at the polls in 2012, lawmakers last year expanded the list of early voting sites to include fairgronds, civic centers, courthouses, county commission buildings, stadiums, convention centers and government-owned community centers. But when the city of Gainesville — which is heavily Democratic — asked if it could use the University of Florida student union for early voting in next month’s municipal elections, the state said no. “The Reitz Union is a structure designed for, and affiliated with, a specific educational institution,” says an advisory opinion from Maria Matthews, director of the state Division of Elections, which is run by a Scott appointee, Secretary of State Ken Detzner. “The terms ‘convention center’ and ‘government-owned community center’ cannot be construed so broadly as to include the Reitz Union.”

National: Voter ID Laws Take Aim At College-Student Voters | Huffington Post

In Tennessee, a new law requiring voters to show photo identification at the polls explicitly excludes student IDs. In Wisconsin, college students are newly disallowed from using university-provided housing lists or corroboration from other students to verify their residence. Florida’s reduction in early voting days is expected to reduce the number of young and first-time voters there. And Pennsylvania’s voter identification bill, still on the books for now, disallows many student IDs and non-Pennsylvania driver’s licenses, which means out-of-state students may be turned away at the polls. In 2008, youth voter turnout was higher that it had been since Vietnam, and overwhelmingly for Barack Obama. This time around, the GOP isn’t counting solely on disillusionment to keep the student vote down. In the last two years, Republican-controlled state legislatures have passed dozens of bills that erect new barriers to voting, all targeting Democratic-leaning groups, many specifically aimed at students. The GOP’s stated rationale is to fight voter fraud. But voter fraud — and especially in-person fraud which many of these measures address — is essentially nonexistent.

Wisconsin: Student voters face trouble in June recall election | GazetteXtra

You’re a college student who has come home for the summer. You’re planning to vote in the June 5 recall election using your parents’ home as your residence. You might be turned away. A change in the state’s voting law and the timing of this election means you might have to vote back in Platteville, Whitewater, Oshkosh or Superior, if you attended college in those cities and if you registered to vote there. “My fear is they’re going to get to the polls on Tuesday (June 5) and be told they can’t vote,” Rock County Clerk Lori Stottler said.

Wisconsin: Timing of recall election not good for the student vote | madison.com

On a warm, sun-splashed evening during final exams week, senior Matt Hochhauser knocks on doors on UW-Madison’s fraternity row. His mission: To get students who are preoccupied with studying and summer plans to think about an election that is just weeks away. “It’s very difficult because we have such a short amount of time to get people to vote,” said the English and history major from Long Island, N.Y., who was canvassing Langdon Street for the Democratic Party on Monday night. The timing of Wisconsin’s historic gubernatorial recall election couldn’t be worse for college students. Many will leave campus for the summer after exams end this week or graduation this weekend. Experts say the June 5 election between Republican Gov. Scott Walker and Democratic challenger Tom Barrett could result in lower turnout for a population that already votes in small numbers. “The barriers are huge,” said Elizabeth Hollander, a senior fellow at Tufts University who studies student civic engagement. “Not to knock college students, but they have a lot of other things on their mind.” Making things more complicated for the transitory population are new voting rules that require voters to live in an election ward for at least 28 consecutive days. People should vote at the residence where they lived on May 8, according to the Government Accountability Board. Students can file an absentee ballot if they are registered at that location but away for the summer.