USA Today/Gannett: Facing DOJ lawsuit, Arizona could be model for states to require proof of citizenship to vote
“What’s happening is that mechanisms of voter suppression are getting more sophisticated and more tailored," said Sylvia Albert, director of voting and elections at the good government group Common Cause.
That isn't limited to new Americans. People who were born at home or on reservations or those whose documents were lost in natural disasters could have their right to vote jeopardized by similar laws, Albert said.
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Accessing those documents can require navigating cumbersome processes and traveling to small government offices to get copies, she said.
“If you are working an hourly job and are the main breadwinner of your family, you can’t go to another state to look at how to go about getting a copy of your birth certificate,” Albert said.
While Arizona and Mississippi so far are the only states to adopt proof of citizenship requirements, Voting Rights Lab found 25 pieces of legislation proposed with similar provisions in 10 states, including Pennsylvania, Idaho and New York.
“We know that bad efforts spread quickly as other states see the success of voter suppression in other states," Albert said.