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An Arizona federal judge is upholding a state law that requires voters to provide verification of their U.S. citizenship before their votes can be counted. Following a lawsuit that led to Arizona legislators facing accusations of discrimination for requiring voters to verify their U.S. citizenship, Judge Susan Bolton ruled on Thursday that such requirements were not discriminatory.
In March 2022, a group of plaintiffs led by the Hispanic voting rights organization “Mi Familia Vota” filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona, claiming that the state’s law was unconstitutional. The Biden Administration filed a separate complaint that was consolidated in the case.
However, Bolton argued that Arizona has an interest in preventing voter fraud as the 2024 presidential election nears.
“Plaintiffs have not carried their burden to show that the Voting Laws’ remaining citizenship investigation procedures, [documentary proof of citizenship] requirements, and registration cancellation procedures violate the [National Voter Registration Act] or the [Voting Rights Act],” Bolton wrote in her ruling. “Nor do these provisions impose an undue burden on the right to vote or violate the equal protection and due process guarantees of the U.S. Constitution. Finally, the Court concludes that Plaintiffs failed to show that the Voting Laws were enacted with any discriminatory purpose.”
“Considering the evidence as a whole, the court concludes that Arizona’s interests in preventing non-citizens from voting and promoting public confidence in Arizona’s elections outweigh the limited burden voters might encounter when required to provide (documentary proof of citizenship),” her ruling continued.