Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has signed the 'Arizona for Voter ID Act,' HB 2492, into law. This legislation will require proof of citizenship to register to vote in local elections in the state. State Rep. Jake Hoffman initially sponsored the bill.
State Rep. Hoffman stated in an interview with the Arizona Sun-Times;
Today is a historic day for Arizona and a great victory for Arizonans and all Americans alike. The signing into law of Arizona House Bill 2492, which requires verification of U.S. citizenship to be eligible to vote in Arizona elections, is a giant step toward ensuring elections are easy, convenient, and secure in our state. HB 2492 is an incredibly well-crafted piece of legislation that is on sound legal footing and broadly supported by voters of all political parties. I am confident that should Democrats challenge HB 2492 in court it will only serve to further reinforce its clear constitutionality.
The law passed through both chambers of the Arizona legislature along party lines and established tough penalties for those who violate it. Under the Arizonans for Voter ID Act, it will be a "felony for election officials to register voters without proof of citizenship;" additionally, county recorders will be required to "regularly cross-reference registered voters with citizenship databases," and gives the Arizona AG authority to investigate potential wrongdoing.
Previously, Arizona had passed Proposition 200, which required proof of citizenship to register to vote; however, a loophole was carved by a 7-2 Supreme Court Decision soon after its passage in 2004. The court decided that Arizona could not enforce the rule for those who only intended to vote in federal elections as a federal law from 1993 pre-empts the state in that area. This means that potentially illegal voters would only have to use a federal form affirming their citizenship, signed under the penalty of perjury, to vote in Arizona elections.
State Rep. Hoffman added in his interview with the Sun-Times;
The language of the bill, specifically the new language in A.R.S. 16-101 and 16-121 that the opponents claim will cause everyone to re-register, clearly states, "has provided satisfactory evidence of citizenship as prescribed in section 16-166. That statutory reference encompasses all of 16-166, including Subsection G, which 'grandfathered' in those who were already registered at the time of Prop 200's effective date in 2005. Under this language they are 'deemed to have provided satisfactory evidence of citizenship.' HB2492 directly refers to that provision, as well as others in 16-166, resulting in those voters still being 'deemed to have provided satisfactory evidence of citizenship.
The Sun-Times added that the Arizona bill had received immense pushback from Democrats in the state. According to the publisher, Democratic Secretary of State Katie Hobbs demanded that the Gov. veto the bill - complaining about the bill making it a felony to register a non-citizen to vote. Other opponents made erroneous claims that "This Arizona bill could keep you from voting early, by mail or for president." And one group, Stand Up America, even made the tall claim - "The bill could remove millions of eligible Arizonans from the voter rolls."
Yesterday, I asked @dougducey to veto HB2492. The bill clearly violates federal law & creates new barriers for voters that are unrelated to any legitimate election integrity purpose.— Secretary Katie Hobbs (@SecretaryHobbs) March 25, 2022
For the good of AZ’s voters, election officials, & taxpayers, @dougducey should veto HB2492. pic.twitter.com/bEiUDUDveW
The bill will take effect after the 2022 primary election but before the general election.
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Updated: Thu, Mar 31st 2022 @ 3:48pm EDT