Van Hollen Asks State Supreme Court for Voter ID Ruling

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Wisconsin attorney general JB Van Hollen is asking the state Supreme Court to rule on the constitutionality of the state’s new voter ID law before the November election.

The law requiring voters to present a photo ID at the polls is tied up in two cases now before the state appeals court. Two Dane county judges suspended the law on constitutional grounds. The attorney general says he does not want to wait for the state appeals court to rule and is asking the state high court to act on it now. “With the November elections coming, obviously timeliness is an issue. And if this law is going to be upheld as constitutional, it certainly should be implemented for this election as the legislature and the governor anticipated it would be.”

The attorney for the Wisconsin League of Women Voters who challenged the law says it is not clear why Van Hollen is making this request now. The Supreme Court in April already declined one request from the appeals court to take up the case. “I don’t know what has changed since then, except that the political climate is getting more heated on the attorney general as we get closer to the presidential election. But, we think the case should go through the court of appeals as the Supreme Court has already indicated it should.”

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There are also two federal court cases pending. Judges in those cases are waiting for the state courts to make a final decision before making a federal ruling on the law.

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