Wisconsin court order relaxes voter ID law for November election News
Wisconsin court order relaxes voter ID law for November election

A Wisconsin court on Tuesday ordered [order] the state to allow voters who do not have identification to vote in November’s general elections. Judge Lynn Alderman’s order implemented an “affidavit option” sought by the plaintiffs, in which voters who are not able to obtain ID can still vote if they sign a declaration explaining why they were unable to do so. The judge believes this will “prevent the disenfranchisement of some voters” as well as “preserve Wisconsin’s interests in protecting the integrity of its elections.” Some voters, the court found, will be unable to obtain a state ID without going to unreasonable lengths if, for example, they are missing documents, the ID-issuing office makes a clerical error, or they cannot physically travel to one of these offices. This temporary injunction will remain in place [Reuters report] until a lawsuit originally filed in 2011 is finalized.

Voting rights remain a controversial legal issue in the US. In May a federal judge ruled that Kansas cannot require voters to provide proof of citizenship [JURIST report] when registering to vote. A federal judge upheld [JURIST report] North Carolina’s voter ID law in April. Earlier that month a federal appeals court held that the Wisconsin voter ID law needs to be re-examined [JURIST report]. In March a federal appeals court agreed to reconsider [JURIST report] Texas’ voter ID law before the entire court. Last May the New Hampshire Supreme Court struck down [JURIST report] a 2012 law requiring voters to be state residents, not just domiciled in the state.