Government & Politics

Court Upholds Incredible Idea: Proving Citizenship in Order to Vote

"The fact that this issue would be disputed at all is astonishing. That it is legally contested is stunning."

Mar. 21, 2014

U.S. District Court Judge Eric Melgren put the brakes on the Obama administration’s efforts to gut state election laws this week, ruling that Arizona and Kansas can enforce voter ID checks. As columnist David Limbaugh observes, “The fact that this issue would be disputed at all is astonishing. That it is legally contested is stunning. That the prime mover in initiating the legal challenge is our own federal government, which has a compelling interest in ensuring the integrity of the election process, is mind-blowing.”

Both states had enacted measures requiring new voters to provide proof of citizenship with a birth certificate, passport or other legal documentation, but the Election Assistance Commission refused to amend federal forms distributed in those states to reflect the change. The EAC, a creation of Congress in the wake of the 2000 election, parroted the Obama Justice Department’s claim that such laws actually suppress voter turnout and are unnecessary because there is no such thing as voter fraud. In reality, voter fraud is quite prevalent, but since it usually works in Democrats’ favor, Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder don’t want to prevent it.

In fact, they argue that such laws are racist because they negatively affect minorities. Limbaugh counters, “If anything racist is involved here, it is in the suggestion that minorities are too incompetent to furnish their IDs.”

In ruling against the EAC, Judge Melgren noted that the Constitution gives states the power to determine voter qualifications, and the EAC has no legal authority to deny requests from the states to update its forms to reflect their laws. “The EAC’s nondiscretionary duty is to perform the ministerial function of updating the instructions to reflect each state’s laws,” he said, ordering the EAC to make the change immediately.

“This is a huge victory … for the whole cause of states’ rights,” said Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach after the ruling. It certainly is. Obama, with the aid of the Justice Department, has done everything in his power and then some to strip away the rights of the states, and this victory now gives other states the opportunity to reclaim the power to establish their voting laws as the Constitution intended.

The EAC is reviewing the decision and Justice has yet to comment on it, but this battle is far from over. Leftists have never let obstacles like constitutional law and legal precedent stop them before in their quest for centralized federal power, so it’s unlikely that this setback will stop them.

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