Another challenge to voter ID in Indiana 

The League of Women Voters of Indiana filed a complaint in the Marion County Superior Court last week to request that the Indiana Voter ID Law be declared unconstitutional under the Indiana Constitution.

The suit challenges  Indiana's requirement that voters must prove their identity by presenting a photo ID before casting a ballot.

In April, the United States Supreme Court upheld Indiana's voter ID law in a suit that was largely fueled by partisanship – with Republicans arguing that the law was necessary to prevent voter fraud and Democrats arguing that the ID requirements presented an undue burden on voters, particularly the elderly, infirm, and poor, who might not have the means to acquire the required identification.

While several of the Supreme Court Justices were sympathetic to those seeking to have the law declared unconstitutional, and expressed concern for the possibility of disenfranchised voters, the inability of the challengers to actually produce one verified instance where a registered voter was denied the right to vote led to a final ruling by the court which upheld the law.

This newest challenge, brought by the League of Women Voters, challenges the law based upon Art. 2, Sec. 2 of the Indiana Constitution, “which sets forth the only qualifications for voting eligibility that can legally be imposed upon voters without further amendment of the Indiana Constitution.”  

The suit argues that because this new law requires a change to the Indiana Constitution before it is legal, and because the State Constitution allows for no changes in voting requirements that require a change to the Constitution, the LWVIN argues that the new law is unconstitutional.

While the grounds for having the law struck down might be different in this case, the motive remains the same as in the previous challenge.

According to President of the LWVIN, Joanne Evers, “In crafting this law, the legislature failed to acknowledge that not all Indiana citizens have a printed birth certificate or the transportation to travel to various government agencies to gather documents or, the funds to purchase the documents required to get the necessary documentation.”  

 “The populations most effected by this law include the aged, disabled, homeless, lower income, minorities, rural residents and women who have hyphenated names or whose names have changed as the result of marriage, divorce or remarriage.”   Evers concluded that the Voter ID Law is a disenfranchisement of Indiana voters.

For his part, Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita, one of the biggest proponents of the voter id law, seems downright annoyed that the Supreme Court ruling did not settle the matter. “Indiana has got some real problems, and this isn't one of them," the Secretary of State said in a written statement immediately following the announcement of the League of Women Voters' lawsuit.

"This lawsuit will result in the resources of state government being focused on this issue yet again and once again at taxpayer expense,” said Rokita.  “The highest court in the land has taken a close and careful look at this law and upheld it.  I am confident this latest attempt to undo Indiana's exemplary photo ID law will also fail.”

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