Apr 4, 2022 - Politics

Arkansas Supreme Court upholds controversial voting laws

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Photo: Montinique Monroe/Getty Images

The Arkansas Supreme Court allowed four voting laws critics called restrictive to go back into effect in a decision Friday, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports.

  • In March, Pulaski County Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen said the laws violate the Arkansas Constitution.

Why it matters: The League of Women Voters of Arkansas and Arkansas United argued the laws place an undue burden on voters and are more likely to disproportionately impact people of marginalized communities.

  • Yes, but: Supporters say the laws serve to strengthen the voting system and provide voters confidence.

Flashback: Soon after Judge Griffen struck down the laws, Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said she would appeal his decision.

Details: The four Republican-sponsored laws:

1. Act 249 requires voters with provisional ballots to submit copies of IDs by the Monday after an election.

2. Act 736 requires a voter's signature on an absentee ballot to be checked against their voter registration.

3. Act 728 prohibits anyone from standing within 100 feet of a polling place, except to stand in line to vote.

4. Act 973 changes the deadline for a mail-in ballot to the Friday before an election. Previously it was the Monday before.

What's next: The Arkansas Supreme Court's decision is the last word for the state laws unless other groups challenge them in court.

Go deeper: Read Axios' Hard Truths on race and voting in the U.S.

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