Obama administration supports another lawsuit filed against Arizona

Posted on June 8, 2011


Arizona Route Marker

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It isn’t bad enough that the federal government is suing Arizona over its anti-illegal immigration law SB-1070, but now the Obama administration is piling on in another lawsuit suing Arizona  over another Arizona law which requires voters to provide proof of citizenship before being allowed to vote:

The federal government has filed court documents supporting a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit to strike down Arizona’s voter-approved requirement that residents provide proof of citizenship when they register to vote.

The court ruled that the National Voter Registration Act pre-empts Arizona’s Proposition 200, which was passed by voters in 2004. The state successfully asked the court to reconsider the decision and an 11-member judge panel of the Appeals Court will rehear it June 21 in Pasadena, Calif. Among its provisions, the National Voter Registration Act creates a standard federal registration form that all states must accept. It requires applicants to sign a statement that they are citizens, but does not require them to show any proof.

Prop. 200 requires applicants, regardless of whether they are submitting a federal registration form or a state one, to provide a driver’s license, passport, birth certificate, tribal-identification or naturalization-certification number.

In its October decision, the Appeals Court ruled that Arizona’s requirement conflicts with the federal act, which requires states to make registration opportunities “widely available” and removes obstacles to voter registration.

On Friday, the federal government filed a court brief arguing that Proposition 200 is pre-empted by the federal voter registration act and that Congress intentionally forbids states from requiring proof of citizenship in order to vote.

First off, I believe that requiring proof of citizenship to vote is not a burden.  How many people of voting age don’t have either a birth certificate or a driver’s license that they can use to meet the citizenship requirement?    Requiring some kind of identification to participate in one of the nation’s most important processes should not be left to someone’s “word.”  Remember, “trust but verify.”  If we refuse to sell liquor or cigarettes to people without proof of eligible age, why should we allow the choosing of our government representatives by anyone who claims to be a citizen without any supporting documents?

Additionally, in the  state which is the main thoroughfare through which most illegal immigrants from Mexico travel and many settle down, it would be frighteningly easy for some of those illegal immigrants to vote in our elections with just a “pinky-swear” promise of citizenship.  

Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne thinks the same way and is pretty irate about the Obama administration joining in the lawsuit fight:

“First, the Obama administration fails to do its job on the border. Then it sues Arizona to prevent us from helping to fight illegal immigration. Then it tries to create a false sense of complacency by arguing that the border is safe, when it isn’t. Now it argues that persons should be able to register to vote without providing adequate information enabling verification of citizenship, thus enabling illegal aliens to register to vote,” Horne said in a media release. “This is contrary to the interests of the people of the United State of America.”

As they say, “Actions speak louder than words,” and the Obama administration’s actions are a testimony to the fact that they really don’t care about Arizona’s illegal immigration problem or helping Arizona deal with it.

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