Republican lawmakers passed a mandate in 2011 that requires voters to produce a photo ID in order to vote in Wisconsin. It has been challenged ever since, and now a federal judge has ruled that Wisconsin residents who don’t have a photo ID will still be allowed to vote in the November election.
The voter ID law was challenged by Democrats almost as soon as it was passed, saying that it was an attempt to prevent minorities from voting, as they are more likely to not have IDs.
A federal lawsuit was filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Law Center for Homeless and Poverty, claiming the law was unconstitutional and put a burden on poor and minority voters. The groups claim that voters who don’t have an ID should be allowed to vote by signing an affidavit explaining why they can’t get one, as some people have errors on birth certificates or can’t get the necessary documents.
U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman in Milwaukee agreed with the groups, saying people may also have other reasons, such as “lack of transportation or family responsibilities” that prevent them from having an ID.
The ACLU stated they are pleased with the judge’s decision. “The injunction means that there will be a fail-safe this November for vulnerable voters who have difficulty obtaining IDs,” said Sean Young, an ACLU attorney.
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