North Dakota Voter ID Law Bars Native Americans from Polls

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe slammed the Supreme Court’s decision allowing North Dakota to enforce a voter ID law.

The law requires voters to present identification that includes a current residential street address if they want to vote in this year’s midterm elections.

“Native Americans can live on the reservation without an address. They’ve lived in accordance with the law and treaties, but now all of a sudden they can’t vote. There is no good reason that a P.O. box is not sufficient to vote,” Standing Rock Chairman Mike Faith said in a press release.

So in addition to a photo ID, your photo ID must list your current address. Which many native Americans, and specifically native Americans on the reservation, simply do not have. This means that a great many native Americans (a demographic who overwhelmingly vote Democratic, what a coincidence) simply have no way to exercise their right to vote.

Like the Georgia case, this is blatant voter disenfranchisement. This continues a clear pattern of republican voter disenfranchisement present in no less than 23 states.

Even if someone like Bricker can make a legal argument in defense of the decision, it’s impossible to ignore the intent behind such efforts on the part of the GOP. It’s not an intent to protect and promote democracy; it’s rather an effort to use legal machinery to deny rights. It’s not unlike using a combination of poll taxes, grandfather clauses, and literacy tests to tilt power away from ethnic minorities or people who are assumed to be voting against their party. This country has for more than a century expanded the franchise; under republican misrule we’re witnessing an effort at reversing that trend. It’s not just wrong; it’s dangerous. When enough people perceive that they can’t use voting to be heard, they might be tempted to resort to more extreme measures. But maybe that’s what Republicans want - they want protests to become violent so that they can justify further erosion of liberty in the name of their security.

Stuff like this never seems to come up in states controlled by Democratic legislatures and governors. I wonder why that is?

Not to say that they would but the fact is that traditional Dem voters are just easier to target. Can you think of some equivalent move that would knock out a big Republican demographic with so little impact on the Dem vote?


Granted, the address requirement is stupid. Not granted, it was malicious.

  1. North Dakota has been a solidly red state, voting republicanfor the past 30+ years (presidential elections). The highest % Dems have recorded in the last 2 decades is 45% in 2008, and that was an anomaly. In 2016 Repubs carried ND by more than 2-1, which is more the norm. Why waste a malicious effort is a state where it wouldn’t matter?
  2. This has nothing to do with the issue in GA, that mention is a straw man. In GA, there is a provisional ballot that allows anyone to vote and establish credentials afterward. No idea of the provisional ballot option in ND.

Argue the facts, not the perception.

Someone came up with a simple plan in one of the Pit threads. Require all voter registration to be done at the board of elections office, to avoid the possibility of tampering with the mail. Then reduce the board of elections office to one office per state, to cut costs. And put that one office in the state’s most populous county, to make it as convenient as possible for the people. Of course, that would make that office pretty crowded if everyone were filling out the forms there, so you have two lines: One for people to pick up the forms and take them home, and another for them to drop them off the next day.

Under this plan, nobody would even be prohibited from registering: Everyone would be legally allowed to. But you’d still get a huge disparity between urban (mostly Democratic) and rural (mostly Republican) eligible voters.

Heidi Heitkamp, a Democrat, is running for re-election for the Senate right now.

Indeed, there is, you have three days to complete the paperwork, gain whatever approval is applied, and bring it to the local election board. What do you think will happen if there are thousands of people making that attempt? Is the government of Georgia prepared for that? Will they assure the voting public that all such applications will be processed in the required time frame?

Or will they simply issue a writ of sucks to be you? I expect this, followed by lawsuits from the aggrieved, which will be taken all the way to the Supreme Court! Where an entirely innocent and non-partisan ruling will be made, i.e., sucks to be you.

Mr. Kemp does not care how he wins, he has the moral integrity of a maggot.

That would be in direct violation of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 which requires states to allow voter registration when applying for a driver’s license or public assistance.

Not even Breyer or Ginsburg dissented from the Supreme Court’s decision to leave the 8th Circuit’s ruling undisturbed. So this is such a blatant legal wrongness, but only Kagan and Sotomayor saw it?

Is it time for Ginsburg to retire?

Or (and spoiler alert: this is the right answer) the law is proper based on the standards in Crawford v Marion County, the Eighth Circuit noted that North Dakota would be likely to proceed on the merits and thus refused to enjoin them from enforcing it state-wide, and the Supreme Court, equally correctly, declined to overturn that decision.
Now, some of youse will piously claim that even though it’s legal, it’s Wrong.

Don’t care what you think. We decide things in this country without relying on what you say is Wrong, especially when your standards are so flexible.

Who are you arguing with? Are you saying that since it’s legal it can’t be Wrong?

I’m saying there’s no one in this thread whose OPINION of what is “wrong,” is remotely persuasive to me.

The only way I could see a Democratic equivalent happening would be if rural voters were somehow legally forced to travel long distances to vote in the city or some faraway place, rather than vote in their own rural precincts - thus burdening them to make long drives. Otherwise, as **CarnalK **pointed out, there’s really no way to target Republican voters specifically.

We are stunned at this shocking revelation.

So do you think people living on reservations were not targeted by this law or do you think it’s not Wrong to do so?

North Dakota allows for tribal identification cards to be used as long as they show correct current residence. If the tribal id card does not have current residence on it, they can use a utility bill, bank statement, government check, or a paycheck. If an individual does not have that id at the time of voting they can cast a provisional ballot and it will be counted as long as they provide the id before the meeting of the canvassing board.
The reason they do not accept PO boxes as address is that they are not proof of residence. Anyone can buy a PO box for five bucks a month regardless of where they live.
All the polls show Heitkamp losing big so they have rolled this story out there so they can blame the loss on something other than their ideas being unpopular.

I don’t think there was targeting in play. The requirement for a non-PO box address is obvious if you want to ensure that the voter actually resides in North Dakota and in the district in which he’s voting. I can get a PO Box in North Dakota; that doesn’t make me a North Dakotan.

What I think is “Wrong,” is the idea that because the requirement for a residence may effect reservations more than others, the law should be banned state-wide. Fortunately, both the Eighth Circuit and the Supreme Court agree that such a ban is not consistent with the law. So, whew.

This bit right here is wrong.

None of those except the utility bill would have a street address if the person was using a PO box.

You can’t buy a tribal id for 5 bucks.

Does a tribal ID prove you live on the reservation, or does it prove you’re a member of the tribe?