Judge Strikes Down Tribe’s Last Ditch Effort to Stop North Dakota’s Voter ID Law
A federal judge on Thursday rejected a lawsuit by the Spirit Lake Tribe in their last-ditch effort to stop North Dakota's new voter identification law before Tuesday's midterm election. The complaint centered around the state’s voter ID law that requires voters to provide a form of ID that includes their legal name, current street address, and date of birth. Native Americans who live on reservations or in rural areas don’t always have street addresses. The complaint filed against North Dakota Secretary of State Alvin Jaeger read: "Jaeger's implementation of the residential address requirement has imposed severe—sometimes insurmountable—burdens on the right to vote for many voters on reservations." It described a mass confusion and bureaucratic obstacles as Native Americans tried to obtain the addresses and ID cards that are now required. Judge Daniel L. Hovland, who had been sympathetic to the tribes’ arguments in the past and blocked the law’s enforcement earlier this year, wrote in a brief that it was simply too close to Election Day to change the rules. He noted that “federal courts are unanimous in their judgment that it is highly important to preserve the status quo when elections are fast approaching.” More here.