Elvia Díaz, Arizona Republic (Phoenix), Aug. 18
Arizona’s top elected officials agreed Wednesday on a plan to carry out the voting provisions of Proposition 200 and begin asking voters to show identification at the polls.
Attorney General Terry Goddard, who has been bickering with Secretary of State Jan Brewer, endorsed her proposed voting changes. With the blessing of Gov. Janet Napolitano, he will ask the U.S. Justice Department for approval of the provisions. The governor’s spokeswoman, Jeanine L’Ecuyer, said Napolitano will sign off on the changes.
The goal is to gain federal approval in time for November local elections in Arizona.
Among the key voting changes:
• Arizonans who can’t produce identification will be unable to cast a provisional ballot. Under the old rules, voters whose names were left off the roster in their voting district were allowed to cast a provisional ballot without providing identification. Workers verified the votes before they were counted.
• Voters will have to produce one form of government-issued photo identification, such as a driver’s license, or two forms of non-photo identification, such as a utility bill or bank statement, to vote in person.
Some Latino leaders who asked Goddard to reject Brewer’s voting changes expressed disappointment, saying thousands of voters who may not carry identification and are unaware of the changes would be disenfranchised.
“These rules will be harmful to Arizonans,” said Steve Reyes, a lawyer for the Los Angeles-based Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund.