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Constitutional Law – preemption — voting

U.S. Supreme Court

Civil

Constitutional Law – preemption — voting

The National Voter Registration Act of 1993 preempts state laws requiring proof of citizenship to vote.

Arizona’s appeal to the presumption against pre-emption invoked in this Court’s Supremacy Clause cases is inapposite. The power the Elections Clause confers is none other than the power to pre-empt. Because Congress, when it acts under this Clause, is always on notice that its legislation will displace some element of a pre-existing legal regime erected by the States, the reasonable assumption is that the text of Elections Clause legislation accurately communicates the scope of Congress’s pre-emptive intent.

Nonetheless, while the NVRA forbids States to demand that an applicant submit additional information beyond that required by the Federal Form, it does not preclude States from “deny[ing] registration based on information in their possession establishing the applicant’s ineligibility.”

677 F. 3d 383, affirmed.

12-71 Arizona v. Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc.

Scalia, J.; Kennedy, J., concurring; Thomas, J., dissenting; Alito, J., dissenting.

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