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Federal judge strikes down Wisconsin voter ID law

By Reuters
Tuesday, April 29, 2014 16:42 EDT
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MILWAUKEE (Reuters) – A federal judge struck down Wisconsin’s voter identification law on Tuesday, saying the measure places unnecessary burden on poor and minority voters, court documents showed.

U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman wrote in the ruling that the law could have a disproportionate impact on such voters because of the costs some of them might incur in obtaining a photo ID, if they did not already have one, according to online court documents.

Minorities in Wisconsin are disproportionately likely to live in poverty and those who live in poverty are less likely to drive or participate in other activities such as banking and traveling, in which a photo ID is required, Adelman wrote in his ruling.

“Thus, we find that Blacks and Latinos are less likely than whites to obtain a photo ID in the ordinary course of their lives and are more likely to be without one,” he wrote.

Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen said in a statement that he is “disappointed” with the ruling and plans to appeal.

(Reporting by Brendan O’Brien; Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Gunna Dickson)

[Image: Polling equipment is set and ready at a local polling station in Milwaukee, Wisconsin Nov. 5, 2012. By Darren Hauck for Reuters.]

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