Supreme Court Hears Challenges To Voter ID Law

League Of Women Voters, NAACP Each Make Case That Law Is Unconstitutional

Wisconsin's photo ID law was passed in 2011, but has since been tied up in state and federal courts. Photo: Lester Public Library (CC-BY-NC-SA)

Lawyers for two groups that are challenging the state’s voter ID law argue their case before the state Supreme Court on Tuesday morning.

The law was has been tied up in both state and federal courts since it was passed in 2011. The League of Women Voters of Wisconsin and the Milwaukee branch of the NAACP have challenged the constitutionality of the law from two different perspectives. In the NAACP case, a Dane county judge found the law discriminates against voters who don’t already have a photo ID by impairing their right to vote.

Andrea Kaminski of the League of Women Voters said their challenge is based on the plain language of the state Constitution.

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“The state Constitution says that in this state, you may vote if you’re 18 years or older, a U.S. citizen, and a resident of this state,” said Kaminski. “The state Constitution does not permit the Legislature to enact laws that disqualify otherwise qualified voters.”

Authors of the bill say photo IDs are necessary to prevent voter fraud such as people voting twice at two different precincts on Election Day.

The state Department of Justice defends the law on Tuesday. Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen has said repeatedly that he believes the ID requirements do not violate either the state or the federal constitutions and should be allowed to govern state elections.

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