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Supreme Court Makes It Harder for Tribal North Dakotans to Vote

On Tuesday, a hearing held in North Dakota by the Supreme Court ordered the voters to submit their identification forms and residential address proofs for voting in the upcoming elections. A state countenance case held in the support of the large number of Native American citizens stated that this particular order might marginalize the citizens of the tribal community because of their non-existent appropriate and suitable identification forms and the mention of their residential address in the proofs of the identity cards.

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In 2012, Senator Heidi Heitkamp won the elections with a difference of less than 3,000 votes for she had the strong support of the Native American citizens. Being appraised as the most vulnerable in the Senate Office, she is the only Democrat to be elected statewide. To lessen the chances of Senate Heidi Heitkamp winning this time, the Republicans of North Dakota are altering the rules and regulations followed earlier by making the process of exercising their right to vote in itself a challenging task, after her triumph in 2012. The Republicans of North Dakota seemed to appeal to alter the requirements of the proofs of identification of the electorates with the determination and resolution to bring fraudulent electorates to a halt, although fraudulence during the in-person voting is a very occasional phenomenon. Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan opposed the appeal while Justice Brett Kavanaugh did not participate in the decision.

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Earlier, in 2017, the Native Americans defied the laws of identification proofs of the electors since the Native Americans were unduly denied from casting their votes by this law.Following this, a judge of the federal district court opposed a major part of this law in April, stating bigoted against the Native electorates. Judge Daniel Hovland stated that the State has recognized the lack of existence of residential address of the Native American communities yet the individuals with no ‘current residential street addresses’ are considered incompetent to cast their vote by the now existing law. A representative of the litigants, Native American Rights Fund states that the United States postal service does not extend their services to these rural Indian communities hence the lack of residential address resulting in which the natives using the insufficient P.O. boxes under the new ruling which has marginalized the voters of North Dakota. The decision of Hovland was in effect this spring.

The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals granted permission in September for this law to come in to being and this ruling was supported by the Supreme Court on Tuesday. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in her opposition stated that one of the most besought policies in the decree of election: to not change the rules and regulations before the commencement of an election was violated by this order of the Supreme Court. She, further cautioned that by granting permission to this order, the Supreme Court was jeopardizing the prevalent marginalization and misunderstanding.

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Further, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote that since the ban against the proof of residential address requirement has been in effect during the primary election, and since the website of Secretary of State proclaimed that the requirement of identification proofs under the existent ban, hence it is natural for the voters to shoulder that the rules of both the primary and general election may remain same, so the voters are in here for a huge confusion. And, if this ruling is to come into being, then marginalization risk will be huge. She also stated that there’s a chance of nearly 20 percent of voters may lack the required proof and additionally, around 18,000 voters may not have the documentation to grant them the access to vote.

Source 1: www.reddit.com

Source 2: thehill.com

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Written by Ketakee Srivastava

I am an amateur content writer, who is currently pursuing a Masters in Finance from ICFAI Business School. In this highly volatile Business Market, I find no better way to keep myself updated than to write about it and reflect my own thoughts as words.

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