Kansas, Alabama and Georgia can demand their residents submit proof of citizenship before signing up to vote even if they’re using the federal government’s registration forms, a judge said Wednesday, delivering a win to states concerned about voter fraud.
The League of Women Voters and the Obama administration had tried to halt the practice, arguing that federal law doesn’t require an extensive citizenship check when people register to vote, and saying the three states were imposing an extra burden on voters.
But Judge Richard J. Leon said that while it may be an inconvenience to require proof of citizenship, and voter registration drives may have to do more work to get folks signed up, it’s not an insurmountable burden — and certainly less so than trying to explain Obamacare.
“The organizational plaintiffs and their members will undoubtedly have to expend some additional time and effort to help individuals,” Judge Leon wrote. “But let’s be candid: doing so pales in comparison to explaining to the average citizen how the [Affordable Care Act] or tax code works!”
The judge rejected plaintiffs’ request for a preliminary injunction.