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Rulings may make voter ID laws presidential race nonfactors

an election official checks a voter's photo identification at an early voting polling site in Austin, Texas. A federal appeals court ruled Wednesday, July 20, 2016, that Texas' strict voter ID law discriminates against minorities and the poor and must quickly be scrubbed of those effects before the November 2016 election. Voters will still need to show identification at the polls under the decision by the New Orleans-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, according to attorneys who challenged the law, but a lower court will now also have to devise a way for Texas to accommodate those who cannot. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)

An election official checks a voter’s photo identification at an early voting polling site in Austin, Texas, in 2014. A federal appeals court ruled Wednesday that Texas’ strict voter ID law discriminates against minorities and the poor and must quickly be scrubbed of those effects before the November 2016 election. (AP File Photo/Eric Gay)

By WILL WEISSERT
and PAUL J. WEBER
Associated Press

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Federal courts have reined in strict voter ID laws in Texas and Wisconsin, while a legal battle in North Carolina continues to rage over its election rules.

The rulings likely won’t sway Texas’ or Wisconsin’s presidential race outcomes — and exactly where potential swing-state North Carolina will end up is unclear.

But it does appear that voter ID laws approved in conservative statehouses with much fanfare may prove unenforceable during the upcoming presidential election.

Texas has been ordered to work with a court to find ways for residents to vote in November, even if they don’t have an ID considered valid under state law.

In Wisconsin, people who can’t obtain IDs will still be able to vote in the presidential election if they sign an affidavit explaining why they couldn’t.

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