Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Thursday, May 08, 2014

States Can Require Citizenship to Vote

The liberals are chanting "voter supression" about the new Kansas Law that requires proof of citizenship in order to vote. The truth is that the only "suppression" is of illegal votes that never should be cast. The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the requirement to show identification in order to vote, so showing a document to prove citizenship is plainly reasonable. This dispute started in 2012 when the federal bureaucrats refused to cooperate with attempts by the states to crack down on illegal voting. Federal bureaucrats typically refuse to take orders from states unless commanded to do so by a court. So Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach sued to force the federal government to include proof of citizenship requirements on its form for registering voters in Kansas and Arizona. State law, after all, is what defines election eligibility, not federal law, apart from a few exceptions such as forbidding discrimination and allowing 18-year-olds to vote. "The U.S. Registration Act" says that states have the power to require proof because the Constitution gives each state "exclusive authority to determine the qualifications of voters for state and federal elections."

This splendid new decision by federal Judge Eric F. Melgren explained that "Because the Constitution gives the states exclusive authority to set voter qualifications under the Qualifications Clause, and because no clear congressional enactment attempts to preempt this authority," it is OK for the states to decide that a "a mere oath is not sufficient" for a prospective voter to prove that he is a citizen.

The judge then ordered the federal Election Assistance Commission "to add the language requested by Arizona and Kansas to the state-specific instructions on the federal mail voter registration form, effective immediately." The words "effective immediately" are particularly gratifying because they order the Obama Administration to comply right now, before the 2014 elections.

Listen to the radio commentary here:

No comments:

Post a Comment

Keep comments short. Long comments will be deleted.