Appeals court blocks Kansas, Alabama and Georgia voter ID rules
People voting

A U.S. Court of Appeals on Friday blocked an effort by Kansas, Alabama and Georgia to require proof of citizenship when registering to vote.

The U.S. Appeals Court for the District of Columbia reversed a lower court decision that denied a preliminary injunction sought by opponents of the proof of citizenship requirement.

Kansas, Alabama and Georgia, like some other Republican-controlled states, have moved to tighten voter identification rules ahead of the Nov. 8 elections.

Republicans argue the tougher voter ID rules help prevent fraud. Opponents, mostly Democrats, say the rules discriminate against minorities.

The Appeals Court said the League of Women Voters, a group that sued to block the proof of citizenship requirement, had shown there would be irreparable harm if the rule was permitted, and had also shown it was likely to win the case on its merits.

The court ordered any voter applications filed since Jan. 29, 2016, to be treated as if they did not contain the proof of citizenship instructions.

(Reporting by Eric Beech; Editing by Bernard Orr and Clarence Fernandez)