Supreme Court To Decide On Arizona Voter ID Law

By John Rosman
March 18, 2013

The Supreme Court of the United States heard arguments Monday surrounding the controversial Arizona Voter ID law.

The New York Times reports the justices seemed divided along party lines on the Arizona law requiring voters to provide proof of citizenship.

Before making its way to the Supreme Court, the mandate forcing individuals to prove citizenship with a document like a driver’s license number or birth certificate — a step beyond federal law that only requires a signature under oath — was overruled by a U.S. District Judge.

The Supreme Court decision will affect what documents voters need in order to vote in a handful of states like Alabama, Georgia, Kansas and Tennessee with similar laws.

Advocates worry what’s at stake goes beyond voting documents. Opponents believe under the voter ID law thousands of traditionally marginalized voters, like young or elderly people, minorities and immigrants face further roadblocks when registering to vote. Supporters believe Arizona is taking hardline steps to ensure the voters placing ballots are legal U.S. citizens.

Arizona has been watched by the Justice Department for decades for a history of discriminating against minority voters.

A decision by the Supreme Court is expected this summer.