Arizona Can’t Enforce New Election Law in 2022 Election: Federal Judge

Arizona officials cannot enforce a new election bill in the upcoming midterm elections, according to a federal judge.

Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs and other officials shall not “take any action to implement or enforce H.B. 2243 in a manner that would remove any voter’s eligibility to vote in the 2022 general election or disqualify any otherwise-valid ballot on the basis of H.B. 2243,” U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton, a Clinton appointee, said in the Sept. 8 order.

Bolton was accepting a joint agreement and proposed order outlined by the Arizona Asian American Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander for Equity Coalition and state officials, including Hobbs and Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, presented to the court earlier Thursday.

The officials and the coalition, which sued over the bill in August, agreed that “the provisions of H.B. 2243 should not operate in a manner that would prevent any voter from (1) voting in the upcoming November 2022 general election or (2) having their vote be counted.” Hobbs and Brnovich also decided that the changes to the state election code shouldn’t take effect until Jan. 1, 2023, because one of the laws the bill is amending is not effective itself until then.

“While we are pleased with this early agreement that protects the right to vote in the next election, we remain steadfast in our commitment to continue to fight both of these voter suppression laws for the long term,” May Tiwamangkala, an official with the coalition, said in a statement. “We are in this fight to protect the rights of all voters in our state, including those from the AANHPI communities.”

The offices of Hobbs, a Democrat who is running for governor, and Brnovich, a Republican who lost in the GOP primary for U.S. Senate, did not respond to requests for comment. A query to the bill’s sponsor, state Republican Rep. Jake Hoffman, was not returned.

Bill

The bill amends a law concerning voter registration. It says the registration will be canceled for a voter who moves to another state.

“What this does is adds a statement to the voter registration form that simply says, ‘I as a voter that am choosing to register, if I move permanently out of state, yes, you have the ability to follow the existing law and remove me from the rolls,’” Hoffman said earlier this year.

The equity coalition in its lawsuit said the bill was “designed and serves to suppress voters of color and naturalized voters” by allegedly chilling voters from registering to vote.

The agreement approved by the judge does not admit any validity to the claims.

From The Epoch Times