North Dakota Voter ID Law Stands After Last-Ditch Lawsuit

The New York Times

A federal judge on Thursday rejected a last-ditch attempt to block North Dakota’s requirement that voters have a residential address.The judge, Daniel L. Hovland of the United States District Court for the District of North Dakota, wrote in a brief, two-page order that it was simply too close to Election Day to do so. 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.”

Mark Gaber, senior legal counsel at the Campaign Legal Center, said he and the other lawyers were reviewing their options. He emphasized that Judge Hovland’s order concerned only the request to block the law before the election, and had no bearing on the ultimate outcome of the challenge to the law’s constitutionality.

Mr. Gaber urged Native Americans to go to the polls on Tuesday and, if turned away for lack of identification, to demand a provisional ballot. The Campaign Legal Center and other groups could then ask the courts to order that the provisional ballots be counted. “The court’s concern was with creating confusion before the election,” he said. “Those same concerns don’t apply after the election is over.”

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