Arizona voting law struck down
In the latest round of an immigration debate pitting state against federal powers, the court in a 7-2 decision declared that Arizona's law went too far. Conservative and liberal justices agreed that, at least when it comes to voter registration, federal law prevails.
The court's decision also comes about one year after a different lineup of justices struck down separate Arizona provisions meant to crack down on immigrants in the country illegally.
The staunchly conservative Scalia dissented from last year's Arizona decision, but on Monday he led a majority that included one fellow conservative, Chief Justice John Roberts Jr., as well as the members of the court's liberal wing.
Under the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, sometimes known as the Motor Voter Act, states are required to "accept and use" a standard federal form when registering voters by mail or through motor vehicle departments. Passed over Republican opposition, the law was intended to make it easier for potential voters to register.
In 2004, though, Arizona voters approved Proposition 200, which required that registrants provide evidence of U.S. citizenship.
The state law mandated that Arizona officials reject the registration application of anyone who submitted the federal form but omitted the proof of citizenship.
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