Democracy Wire

Read more from our staff and guests, along with news stories and commentary on the issues that matter.
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Kansas judge expands vote to thousands

August 2, 2016

Shawnee County district Judge Larry Hendricks ordered the state of Kansas to count votes in the primary election from people who registered without proof of citizenship. This blocked a rule from Kansas’s Secretary of State, which would have prevented 17,500 citizens from voting in state and local elections.

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North Dakota Court Recognizes Discrimination in Voter Law

August 2, 2016

Federal Judge Daniel L. Hovland this week blocked enforcement of North Dakota’s voter ID requirement, ruling that the law violates the voting rights of thousands of Dakotans who cannot easily obtain the required identification. The lawsuit was filed by members of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa, who argued that many Native Americans could not afford the necessary ID.

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Court Upholds Straight-Ticket Voting in Michigan

August 1, 2016

On July 21, a federal judge struck down Michigan’s attempt to ban straight-ticket voting, finding that the restriction placed a “disproportionate burden on African-Americans’ right to vote.” The court also ruled that Michigan’s $5 million plan to upgrade the machinery of its elections to offset that burden was “woefully insufficient.”

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Federal court strikes down North Carolina Voter ID law

August 1, 2016

Wide-ranging legislation to make voting in North Carolina more difficult was struck down last week by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. Common Cause North Carolina is among the plaintiffs that challenged the constitutionality of that law.

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