Should voters have to prove citizenship to register? - Fox 2 News Headlines

Should voters have to prove citizenship to register?


Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne will be in Washington D.C. Monday to argue a case in front of the Supreme Court that could impact future voters across the U.S.

The attorney general will be arguing that the state's voter ID law should apply to federal elections as well.

It's been a point of contention and confusion.
Arizona requires proof of citizenship, like a drivers license, to register to vote in state elections.

Monday, the Supreme Court is taking up the issue of whether or not states can demand proof of citizenship on federal voter-registration forms.

Both forms are used in Arizona.

"It has nothing to do with Election Day, it has to do with the registration process," said Paul Bender, ASU law professor.

Tom Horne will argue, among other things, that the law protects against election fraud, but opponents say it will only disenfranchise voters.

"Voting is very important, but when you make people engage in several hours of going from office to office or trying to get a document or paying for it, when you make people do that before they register to vote the problem challengers see is, that's going to discourage some people from voting," said Bender.

Arizona's voter ID law was approved by voters in 2004.

But last year the circuit court of appeals said the state could demand proof of citizenship for state voter-registration forms. It could not demand proof of citizenship for federal elections, which led to confusion in the 2012 presidential election where some voters were required to prove citizenship and other's weren't, depending on if they filled out a state or national form.

"The only people this affects are people who are entitled to vote, but are not registered, who might go to register to vote and might be prevented even though they're entitled to vote because they don't have proper identification," said Bender.

Horne is in Washington D.C. and is not doing interviews.

While he'll be arguing in front of the Supreme Court Monday, a decision is not expected until this summer.

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