Voter beware: Even if you are legally registered to vote at an Arizona residence, you may not be allowed to vote for state and local offices in 2014. Last week, Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne released an opinion directing the state’s top elections official, Secretary of State Ken Bennett, to implement a split election system in which voters will be restricted to a much shorter ballot if they only completed a federal voter registration form, which does not require proof of citizenship. Arizona state law requires proof of citizenship from all voters in state and local elections, even for voters previously registered in another state or Arizona county, in the form of an Arizona driver’s license issued after 1996, a birth certificate, a passport, naturalization documents or a Tribal Certificate of Indian Blood. At the federal level, however, the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 created a universal voter registration form requiring that a person sign under penalty of perjury that he or she is a U.S. citizen, and mandates that those with a driver’s license or social security number provide that information; those without are given a separate ID number by the state.
There has not been a single prosecuted instance of a non-citizen using the federal form to unlawfully register to vote. In spite of this, Arizona decided that the requirements were too lax, and refused to accept the federal form.
The Supreme Court, however, ruled against the state in a 7-2 decision. Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the majority, said, “a state-imposed requirement of evidence of citizenship not required by the Federal Form is ‘inconsistent with’ the NVRA’s mandate that States ‘accept and use’ the Federal Form.”
Horne seems to be trying to find a hole in the Supreme Court ruling by creating the split election system. He wrote in his official opinion last week that “registrants who have not provided sufficient evidence of citizenship should not be permitted to vote in state and local elections.”
Full Article: Arizona Daily Wildcat :: Voter ID laws restrict democracy.