Justices Invalidate Arizona Voter Registration Law

Lawrence Hurley, Reuters, June 17, 2013

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday struck down an Arizona law that required people registering to vote in federal elections to show proof of citizenship, a victory for activists who said it had discouraged Native Americans and Latinos from voting.

In a 7-2 vote, the court, in an opinion written by conservative Justice Antonin Scalia, ruled the voter registration provision of the 2004 state law was trumped by a federal law, the 1993 National Voter Registration Act.

The state law was opposed by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund and Indian tribes. They said it deterred legal voters who did not have the required paperwork from registering to vote.

It was another setback for the Republican leadership of a state, bordering Mexico, that has tried to crack down on illegal immigrants at a time when Hispanics represent the largest U.S. minority at nearly 17 percent of the population.


At the same time, the high court made clear that Arizona could still have other ways to assert its argument that it should be allowed to ask for proof of citizenship. That would be the subject of separate litigation, the court said.

“It is a bit of a mixed bag, but at the end of the day it does reaffirm the absolute right to vote,” said Arizona state Senator Steve Gallardo, a Democrat.

Gallardo said the law unfairly made it seem as if there was massive fraud among Latino voters, which has never been proven. For a year, the Arizona Republican Party … (has) been using different methods to disenfranchise Latino voters,” he said.


The ruling will affect three other states–Georgia, Alabama and Kansas–that have similar laws, and prevent others that may have wanted to follow suit from enacting legislation along the same lines.

Federal law requires prospective voters to provide one of several possible forms of identification, such as a driver’s license or a passport, but no proof of citizenship is needed. Would-be voters simply sign a statement saying they are citizens.


In Monday’s majority opinion, Scalia said the state law was pre-empted by language in the federal statute saying that states must “accept and use” a federal registration form. The state law ordered officials to reject the form if there was no accompanying proof of citizenship.

The two dissenters, Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, said in their separate opinions that states alone have the authority to decide voter qualifications.

In outlining the limitations of the ruling, Scalia focused on the role of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, a federal agency that oversees changes to state voter registration procedures. The commission rejected the Arizona plan, prompting several justices to ponder during oral arguments in April why the state did not file a lawsuit challenging the decision.

Scalia said Arizona could still ask the commission to include a citizenship provision on the federal form in the future and could challenge the current form in separate litigation. “That alternative means of enforcing its constitutional power to determine voting qualifications remains open to Arizona here,” he wrote.

Scalia noted the commission already has granted Louisiana permission to require additional materials as proof of identification if an applicant does not have a driver’s license, identification card or Social Security number.

Rick Hasen, an election law expert at the University of California, Irvine, School of Law, said Arizona could win future litigation on the issue in light of the Louisiana decision.


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  • Puggg

    Federal law requires prospective voters to provide one of several possible forms of identification, such as a driver’s license or a passport, but no proof of citizenship is needed. Would-be voters simply sign a statement saying they are citizens.

    Has any non-citizen ever been prosecuted for lying on a voter registration form claiming to be a citizen when they’re not? And we know that illegal aliens are registering to vote and actually voting; one who thinks otherwise is naive.

    • Stentorian_Commentator

      The pug is right! And it distrurbs me to see this professional naivete by Roberts, Scalia, and Kennedy, who must force themselves to think that somehow Ginsburg, Breyer, Kagan, Sotomayor are on the level when they are power mad leftist ideologues.

    • The__Bobster

      Unfortunately we can no longer write laws that depend on the honesty of our citizenry. Non-Whites just care about winning and gubmint handouts.

      • Sick of it

        Especially when it involves the theoretical honesty of people who are here because they have broken the law to be or stay here.

    • me

      Well, since we don’t have to register to vote……I’m going to hire a bunch of ‘latrinos’ down by the Home Depot next election day and have them vote for the candidate of my choice. It should only cost me a couple of hundred dollars to get two dozen votes. Isn’t democracy grand?

  • bigone4u

    Illegal voting by illegals would not even be a problem if the Feds were not doing everything in their power to allow them in to overwhelm the system. The real answer is in deportation, not in stop-gap measures like the one given the boot today. Kudos to Arizona and the other states that try to slow the tsunami of parasites.

    • Eagle_Eyed

      If I were the attorney general of AZ I’d release a statement saying I’m ignoring the entirety of the illegitimate ruling and draft up arrest warrants for the seven illegitimate SCOTUS judges who are to be arrested under suspicion of treason.

  • Actual, crimes are committed here. Who would have the authority to place them under arrest should it be revealed that they were politically motivated?

  • Eagle_Eyed

    As the legitimacy of the Federal Government continues to decline, it’ll be interesting to see what the people do. If the mafia in Washington refuses to prevent the illegal takeover while simultaneously telling us we can’t protect our nation either, it’s high time we start ignoring Washington and the illegitimate laws and rulings.

  • HJ11

    It should be clear that part of the plan of brown racists and also White on the outside but brown on the inside anti-Whites such as McCain, Graham, et al. to brown America is to let illegal aliens be citizens so Whites will have to support them and also so these illegal aliens will be able to vote Whites out of office. It’s slow genocide of Whites.

    You will note that Graham doesn’t care about genocide of Whites–he’s never been married and has no children. He is extinction walking. You will also note that McCain not only adopted a black daughter, but his son has also married a black. He also doesn’t care if Whites go extinct.

    • IstvanIN

      Does Graham have nieces and nephews? I have heard he has a sister. Even if he has no one after him why would he support the extinction of his people? An even more puzzling question is why do all the white, married with white children and white grandchildren Republicans support genocide?

      • HJ11

        Not everyone is bright enough to see long term that their actions today can result in our genocide.

        Not everyone has the same motives.

        Why would anyone jump off a bridge and kill themselves? Insane.

        • IstvanIN

          I can understand suicide. The poor soul may be terribly depressed or life has just become unbearable. These men have comfortable lives and are not stupid.

          • HJ11

            McCain et al. may be blenders. They believe that it would be wonderful if all Whites had Blacks, Browns, Yellows and Reds in their family trees. Such people often think that’s the way to world peace and the way to end so-called “racism.”

          • Sick of it

            Looking at the Middle East, it only seems to make for more violent people, not less violent people.

          • HJ11

            It’s also anti-nature and anti-evolution. We Whites diverged from non-Whites thousands of years ago and became the dominant type in Europe because we have mutations that give us a survival advantage in the less sunny regions of the planet. And, as it is with many changes in genes that cause mutations, when you change one or two genes you automatically change others. The result was White people both externally and internally.

            Trying to blend us back in with darker peoples is devolution for us. It sends us back to Africa (metaphorically). Check out the former German colony in Jamaica. The blacks all have German surnames becase the Germans blended themselves away. No one there today could ever even guess how to build a Mercedes or BMW.

            Genes are us.

          • Bossman

            I’ve seen travel documentaries about those few Germans in Jamaica.That colony must have been very tiny to begin with but there are a few real Germans still surviving from that colony. If you want to know how can many black Jamaicans have German surnames, here’s how it happens: It only takes one German to cross the line and then his very fertile Mulatto offspring will have dozens of offsprings and those offsprings will do the same.

          • HJ11

            I’ve been to Jamaica. It gives a clear example of the fact that if Whites live as a minority among a huge population of Blacks, that eventually bedroom genocide is going to happen.

            The way to stop bedroom genocide and the infection of the White genetic code is for Whites to remain separate and isolated (if possible) from all non-Whites.

      • Ella

        Power and money come over heritage; they’re disconnected from their own European-descent culture. Really, they think of their own family fortune and that’s it.

        • White Mom in WDC

          Exactly. These people who are our ‘leaders’ have different value systems than we do. That is where the disconnect is. Time to raid the Hill and kick the bums out.

      • NordicHeritage
    • The__Bobster

      Goober isn’t called Miss Lindsey for nothing. The usual suspects are using the threat of revealing his predilections against him.

    • Graham is a homosexual. Just ask Obama,
      Lindsay proved to him that he was on the team.

      • White Mom in WDC

        I have to say that I have really come to despise homosexuality. Sodomites do not care about the future because they have no offspring. It is a selfish state that they are in always. Their practice contributes to white genocide.

  • Paleoconn

    How can these bastards overturn a sovereign state’s law that attempts to protect the integrity of the voting franchise?! What kind of tyranny is this?! The only guy who gets my respect on the high nine is Thomas. Scalie, Roberts, Kennedy all useless neocons of the respectable right as vdare calls such phonies.

    • NordicHeritage

      This should awaken people to the fact that all 3 branches of government is now firmly under the sway and control of big money. People should have known after the citizens united case that the SCOTUS would be of no help in regards to upholding the constitution.

      • Paleoconn

        The SCOTUS has been a force for evil for 40+ years now, often under Repug administrations, eg. Roe v Wade. I hate these traitorous pigs.

  • The__Bobster

    Gallardo said the law unfairly made it seem as if there was massive fraud among Latino voters, which has never been proven.

    Here we go again. Never matter how many thousands of cases of voter fraud we show the Dems, they keep repeating the same old lie.

  • libertarian1234

    It just keeps getting worse.
    How utterly ridiculous for a judicial body to determine that its own country can’t enlist policies that will assure security for its voting procedure.
    The founders provided for a lot of things, but combatting aliens who constantly seek to conquer it from within wasn’t one of them.
    More and more, every day, we are shown why it is necessary to start over in every way.

    • dukem1

      Our country is becoming controlled by the SCOTUS, which is nothing more than a panel of Imams who always make the final decision, regardless of what any elected body has decreed.
      We are doomed.

      • Bossman

        That is the way the Founders designed it and so far it has worked.

  • Ella

    Half the businesses ask for valid ID when you charge, when you return merchandise for store credit, when you cash a check, open a cell phone account or cc and so on. Native Americans are US citizens since the 1924 Indian Citizenship Act (Some hate this and want to be separate from Federal Govt. control; I can see clearly why.) So this does not make sense to me. AZ should copy LA laws and go with it.

  • WhiteGayMale

    The federal law needs to be strengthened.

  • HJ11

    Whites who still believe that our present day corrupt Star Wars Bar nation is the same as the America of myths, should have their heads examined.

    As in Orwell’s Animal Farm, the pigs in power in this country keep changing a word here and there on the barn wall in an incremental attempt to completely change the nation.

  • Spartacus

    Typical Liberal Logic – “People who just jumped the fence from a foreign country have the right to vote.”

  • itdoesnotmatter

    Definition of Insanity:

  • itdoesnotmatter

    Oops, tried an upload. Failed

  • If citizenship is not required for the vote, then the Union is dissolved!

    For the last time.

  • JackKrak

    So can 13 year-olds get a driver’s license now because forcing them to prove that they’re 16 would be “discrimination”?

  • 5 of the 9 supreme court justices were appointed by the GOP presidents. When is the alt-right going to talk about THAT?? Never! Because the alt-right is a wholly owned subsidiary of the GOP.

  • Jackryanvb

    Blacks in Chicago will be empowered to vote in…

    Montana, Idaho because well, they want to and these states are too White.

    • Ella

      They won’t be for long with the refugee relocation Non-profit groups to resettle them in Idaho, MT and NE. They do about 800 families p/y per State listed under the assistance of UN. Look it up since Idaho Univ has courses on it now as part of your social work program. Obama now wants 3 thousand Syrians to be relocated here in America……a few more terrorists on the FBI “not watch list” but we ease-drop on Americans who disagree.

  • John Smith

    It will be interesting to see if the Hispanics just start bussing in illegal aliens around voting time from Mexico now that the Supreme Court allows anyone in the world that can illegally enter the United States to vote.

    • joesolargenius

      in regards to bussing in illegal aliens .
      How do you think John F Kennedy got elected ?

  • NeanderthalDNA

    The biggest problem with immigration is that Obama, head of the branch of government (according to the constitution, right?) that is tasked with enforcing the laws of the land, refuses to direct the agencies responsible to enforce the law.

    Hey Barry O, I know where there’s a whole bunch of illegal aliens. Don’t look now, but…they’re right there in your office meeting with you…shhhh…call immigration in quick – we can nab a whole bunch of them…they’re right there, see? Oh…so you’re NOT going to enforce the law, eh? Ah…

    11 million unregistered Democrats for Barry O and the holy cause of White Genocide, plus right-to-work wage slaves for the Republicans. Who needs to ever be in power again when ya got all the low IQ wage slaves you can shake a cell phone at, right GOP?

  • WR_the_realist

    Just think… if the Poles had given the Germans the right to vote in their elections it wouldn’t have been necessary for Hitler to actually invade Poland. The Germans could have annexed the Danzig Corridor by popular vote, no blitzkrieg necessary. Today, one billion Chinese could easily out vote Americans and annex our entire country for China.

    The possibilities are mind blowing. Who could be so narrow minded as to actually require that voters be citizens?