Liberal 9th Circuit Court Strikes Again
A federal appeals court on Tuesday threw out a state mandate for people to provide proof of citizenship before being allowed to register to vote.
In a divided decision, the majority of the three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals concluded the requirement, approved by Arizona voters in 2004, runs afoul of the federal National Voter Registration Act. That law spells out procedures to register to vote in federal elections.
Judge Sandra Ikuta, writing the majority decision, concluded that the Arizona law imposes an additional requirement not permitted. Siding with Ikuta was retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor who also heard the legal arguments.
The ruling drew fire from Judge Alex Kozinski who said the full 9th Circuit reached a different conclusion about the law three years ago.
But Ikuta said that 2007 decision, which came in a request by the same plaintiffs in this case to enjoin the law, "was rooted in a fundamental misreading of the statute.''
She said that earlier ruling was based on the premise that Arizona could either accept the federal form, which does not require proof of citizenship, or develop its own form.