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SCOTUS Lets ND Indian Voter Suppression Law Stand, Sets Precedent for Disqualifying RV Voters

The Supreme Court decided 6–2 this week, without rookie Justice Kavanaugh’s help, not to wade into the battle over North Dakota’s new stricter voter ID law, even though, as the dissenting Justice Ginsburg noted, it could prevent 18,000 to 70,000 North Dakotans from voting.

Such voter suppression is exactly the intent of North Dakota’s Republican lawmakers:

The voter ID law was introduced just months after Senator Heidi Heitkamp, a Democrat, eked out a narrow upset victory in 2012, winning by less than 3,000 votes. Republican lawmakers responded by passing restrictive voter ID legislation that all but guaranteed that large numbers of Native Americans — who tend to vote Democratic — wouldn’t be able to participate in the political process. Specifically, the law requires voters to bring to the polls an ID that displays a “current residential street address” or other supplemental documentation that provides proof of such an address.

This may seem like an innocuous requirement, but in practice, it’s likely to disenfranchise thousands of Native Americans, many of whom live on reservations in rural areas and don’t have street addresses. Since the U.S. Postal Service doesn’t provide residential mail delivery in remote areas, many members of North Dakota’s Native American tribes list their mailing addresses, like P.O. boxes, on their IDs. And some also don’t have supplemental documentation, like a utility bill or bank statement, because of homelessness or poverty. Now, because the Supreme Court refused to block the law, people who show up at their polling station with a P.O. box on their ID will be turned away [Ashoka Mukpo, “Supreme Court Enables Mass Disenfranchisement of North Dakota’s Native Americans,” ACLU, 2018.10.12].

With the Supreme Court’s imprimatur, North Dakota’s voter suppression law sets a precedent for disenfranchising RV voters as well. North Dakota’s 2017 HB 1369 calls for a “current residential street address.” A bank of mailboxes in an office, like the one that abruptly shuttered in Madison in July and stranded its itinerant customers, would not qualify as a “residence,” which the 2017 law defined as “an actual fixed permanent dwelling, establishment, or any other abode to which the individual returns when not called elsewhere for labor or other special or temporary purposes.” (While a separate and thus arguably irrelevant chapter, North Dakota hunting law says “A rental property, vacant lot, or house, cabin, or premises used primarily for business or recreational pursuits may not be considered a residence.”

North Dakota has rationalized its crackdown on voter ID as a response to voter fraud, which is Republican code for Democrats winning elections. It’s certainly not code for anything happening in practical numbers affecting any election results:

35 "credible allegations" of voter fraud versus 834 million votes cast from 2000-2014; Justin Levitt, Loyola Law School, in German Lopez, "This Week's Voter ID Rulings Could Decide Control of the Senate," Vox, 2018.10.11.
Justin Levitt, Loyola Law School, in German Lopez, “This Week’s Voter ID Rulings Could Decide Control of the Senate,” Vox, 2018.10.11.

And that’s only “credible allegations,” which as we know from our Republican Senators, don’t mean jack when deciding who gets to serve in important government positions.

But if Republicans are really worried about voter fraud, we should expect South Dakota legislators to take their cue from North Dakota and the Supreme Court and ban the practice of allowing itinerant voters to claim “residency” in a rented mailbox.

64 Comments

  1. Jason 2018-10-13

    Cory lies again.

    https://vip.sos.nd.gov/civics101.aspx?ptlhPKID=126&ptlPKID=7

    The Tribe had years to give their members an address and did not.

    North Dakota doesn’t have voter registration so fraudulent voting is easier to do in North Dakota.

    The only people to blame are the Tribal Leaders.

  2. jerry 2018-10-13

    Those mailbox schemes could definietely be an issue for Republicans in Rapid City, Phil Jensen, I think, benefits greatly from that several hundred vote each cycle. What’s good for the goose and all of that.

  3. mike from iowa 2018-10-13

    What voter fraud are you whining about, Jason?

    http://www.startribune.com/no-voter-registration-point-of-pride-unease-in-north-dakota/485071011/

    One prosecuted case in the 2016 election. Voter fraud does not exist in the rampant forms you uneducated wingnuts gripe about. You make these statistics up and report them as gospel. Voter fraud is when your side tosses legal minorities off voter rolls illegally and then sets up all kinds of roadblocks so they can’t or won’t register.

    Give the voter fraud bull$$$$ a freaking rest! And don’t feed me the line the Heritage Foundation found all kinds of fraud in North Dakota. They would have been prosecuted if it was true.

  4. leslie 2018-10-13

    Rant: I think in ND its ok to run over Indian protestors in the road too. Economic development or “patriotism”. There is a legitimate reason that rental Mailbox residences are ok in SD too. A crony republican has figured how to make more money from rally tourism. And some empty offices in Sx Falls are principal place of business residences for international tax cheats. Several trillion dollars. Shhhhh. Citibank thinking spawned DSU’s cybersecurity center, NCPFI financial infrstructure center, Regents for-profit board, various other get rich quick schemes for crony republican lawyers and accountants. Likely why unqualfied inexperienced AG candidates abound in SD. Or God is the rationale. “Gaming Democracy” you could call it. SD GOP promotes welders and trust babies.

  5. leslie 2018-10-13

    And racists like Jason. There it is.

  6. T 2018-10-13

    Leslie
    The hit and run on natives started in SD with Jlow
    When men were men and used motorcycles, not automobiles

  7. jerry 2018-10-13

    With the mailboxes, all have P.O. Box numbers with the same address. North Dakota has these mailbox forwarding services just like South Dakota. Why shouldn’t the tribes be able to do the same?

  8. Debbo 2018-10-13

    Puttiepublicans can’t win on policies, so they cheat. This ND law is one of the ways they cheat. Republicans who have a conscience and a sense of morals decry this kind of abysmal behavior and don’t participate in it.

    Putiepublicans, on the other hand, are immoral, indecent, generally, racist, classist and misogynist. Putiepublicans have no problem with behaving shamefully.

    Putiepublicans like ND’s anti-democratic, anti-republican law.

  9. T 2018-10-14

    4 the record
    Previous was ill rumor
    Which most of u know

  10. Jason 2018-10-14

    Members of an organized voter fraud ring have been arrested and indicted on charges they targeted and, in one case stole, the votes of elderly voters on the city’s north side.

    Four people were arrested — Leticia Sanchez, Leticia Sanchez Tepichin, Maria Solis and Laura Parra — after being indicted on 30 felony counts of voter fraud, according to a statement from the Texas Attorney General’s Office.

    https://www.star-telegram.com/news/local/community/fort-worth/article219920740.html

  11. Jason 2018-10-14

    Congrats to the communist Star Tribune for pointing out that ND requires an ID.

  12. Jason 2018-10-14

    Georgia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams said Tuesday that the “blue wave” is comprised of “undocumented” immigrants, among many others.

    What do you think she means Mike?

  13. jerry 2018-10-14

    Please provide link widdle Russian. Otherwise, I will say that Georgia Republican guber candidate Kemp said that Putin was giving him an edge with his bots and showed the checks he was receiving from the Russian leader. The same ones you get from the paytroll accounts.

  14. jerry 2018-10-14

    “Accused” is the key word here widdle Russian, the women were “accused” and have not been prosecuted. Here in the Sunshine State, I liked that better, Jackely prosecuted an “accused Stacy Phelps”, turns out Phelps was innocent as declared by a jury of his peers.

  15. Donald Pay 2018-10-14

    Jason,

    The allegation is that one vote was “stolen” in 2016. The rest of the indictment seems to focus on the legal activity of identifying voters so that they could vote by mail, but because there is the allegation of a “stolen” vote, the legal activity appears to have been rolled into the indictment. The real issue here is that these efforts were aimed at assuring minority elderly voters could vote, which is why the indictment was brought. They want to discourage minority voters and those who help minority voters to cast a ballot.

    Watch your racism, Jason. It’s showing.

  16. jerry 2018-10-14

    “Communist Star Tribune”, sounds like widdle Russian hopes. Tribal members have used their tribal identification used to be used in all elections, this one is different. Tribal officials understand racism and they also understand the Native Vote is against that. What is way cool is that tribal officials are working diligently to provide the tribal members with a way to show their patriotism with their vote. It’s a beautiful thing when you look at new adversity and work to overcome it.

    “Native American groups in North Dakota are scrambling to help members acquire new addresses, and new IDs, in the few weeks remaining before Election Day — the only way that some residents will be able to vote.

    This week, the Supreme Court declined to overturn North Dakota’s controversial voter ID law, which requires residents to show identification with a current street address. A P.O. box does not qualify.

    Many Native American reservations, however, do not use physical street addresses. Native Americans are also overrepresented in the homeless population, according to the Urban Institute. As a result, Native residents often use P.O. boxes for their mailing addresses and may rely on tribal identification that doesn’t list an address.” https://www.npr.org/2018/10/13/657125819/many-native-ids-wont-be-accepted-at-north-dakota-polling-places

  17. Jason 2018-10-14

    Donald Pay,

    Where was race brought up in the article I linked to?

    In South Dakota you are required to send a copy of your ID or have a notary public signature to get an absentee ballot.

    How am I racist Donald? Let’s see the evidence?

  18. Jason 2018-10-14

    The Tribes should have done it right after the law was passed Jerry.

    The Tribal leaders screwed their members.

  19. jerry 2018-10-14

    trump screwed the tribal members and the tribal members are clear on that.

  20. Darin Larson 2018-10-14

    What’s next Jason, poll taxes?

  21. Jason 2018-10-14

    Darin,

    Do you see dead people?

    How many personalities do you have?

  22. Rough Rider 2018-10-14

    Jason you are correct North Dakota does not have Voter Registration. The Election Judges where I voted were on a first Name basis with the Voters.

    The VOTER FRAUD allegation is a Red Herring, it all about staying in power and keeping the Native Americans from voting.

  23. CLCJM 2018-10-14

    Apparently, this ruling is a mixed bag. I live in SD District 9 where I know we have at least one of those mail forwarding places which has affected our elections. Curious if this will make an immediate difference in this election. It should!

    Jason, those postal addresses are assigned by the USPS! How is it that you think the Tribe can just make up addresses and force the USPS to recognize them?

  24. Donald Pay 2018-10-14

    Jason,

    You gotta pay attention. These efforts are going on all over the country right now as Republican flunkies are trying their best to keep people from voting. Why would the Republican flunkies admit in the article that they brought the lawsuit to discourage minority voters? That would get the suit tossed pronto. They pretend they’re doing this to “protect” the vote. Ha. We’ve seen that rodeo before. (Rodeo, by the way is derived from a Spanish word, and white cowboys picked it up from the Mexican cowboys.) Really, are we going to have to fight another civil war to end Republican efforts to undermine democracy?

  25. Peter Carrels 2018-10-14

    Voter suppression is a national strategy by the GOP. They’ve been good at it, too.
    There was more resistance regarding changing the nickname of the University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux than there has been to restrict and supress voting opportunities for the Sioux and other Native Americans.

  26. T 2018-10-14

    CLC
    Yes they are assigned by USPS
    When we moved our address was ok for 911
    (We put living quarters on piece of propert)
    However could not get our mail forwarded or packages delivered as reatialers stated we are not a known address, after a month the Usps did ok the address as a legitimate address for mail and took some doing in the system
    However on google maps or gps didn’t catch up, sometimes people still go a small town away to a pasture,,,,,,
    There is no way one can make up an address. If the county assigns it to you doesn’t mean the Usps is parallel to make it legit

  27. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2018-10-14

    I tire of Jason’s constant character assassination. He comes to insult and degrade me, not to contribute to the discussion, while he hides behind an unidentifiable handle (the confidentiality of which I still respect, despite the absolute lack of reciprocal respect from Jason) and does not offer us the same opportunity to damage his character in public with blatant lies.

    I did not lie here. I have not lied in the past. To say “Cory lies again” is itself a heinous lie.

    I have portrayed the ND voter ID law and its practical impact honestly. None of the ND guidance on obtaining acceptable IDs denies the main fact of the law: voters must present a residential address, not a P.O. box, to vote.

    I tire of having to spend so much time reiterating basic facts denied by destructive agents instead of building our knowledge on a discussion of agreed-upon facts.

  28. mike from iowa 2018-10-14

    So it is agreed we can vanish the troll?

    On a peculiar side note, Native Americans can be useful for wingnuts to take advantage of. It just so happens a certain wingnut who is in line to be the next SOH in DC has an Indian problem in the immediate family- https://www.rawstory.com/2018/10/majority-leader-kevin-mccarthys-brother-scored-millions-government-contract-based-false-claim-native-american-ancestry/

    And one more point, when it comes to sincerely held religious beliefs of Native Americans with respect to respecting the land versus a multi-national korp with oil to send through a pipeline through Indian sacred land, guess whose gonna lose their sincerely held religious beliefs?

  29. Jason 2018-10-14

    Cory,

    Do you disagree that the Tribal leaders had two years to get addresses for their members?

  30. Debbo 2018-10-14

    I’m in agreement. The troll can go. He wastes valuable time slinging lies and ridiculous assertions.

    It seems to me that the bit about” He didn’t SPEAK the actual words so it ain’t true” began with GWB, Darth Cheney and their minions. As long as they didn’t directly and loudly and often admit they lied about something, even when 99.99999999999% of the facts clearly showed it was a lie, the minions didn’t believe the facts; they believed Shrub and Darth.

    People of average or better intelligence, with the ability to think critically, can recognize lying, racism and similar vile behavior even when the speaker does not introduce his words similar to this: “Your attention please. I am going to speak in a highly discriminatory manner now and my targets will be the poor, American Indians and women. So, in order, prepare for classism, racism and misogyny. I will mix into to my discriminatory statements more lies than you can count, so just assume that everything I’m going to say now is a discriminatory lie. Ready? Begin.”

    Of course Putie’s Butt Buddy has upped the level by factors of 50.

  31. Jason 2018-10-14

    So far there is zero evidence of racism or voter suppression presented in this thread or the other one.

  32. Debbo 2018-10-14

    If you sometimes feel a headache coming on due to the determined efforts to gaslight by Putie’s Puppies, check out this site: https://goo.gl/ugJwBX

    Axios put together a short list of websites working to counteract the endless lies drooling from the slobbering jaws of Pootie’s Puppies, the children on the paytroll.

    I especially like The Trust Project and The Journalism Trust Iniative. The latter is my favorite because it’s not based in or focused solely on the USA.

  33. jerry 2018-10-14

    Native’s fight back Native Vote on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/nativevote16/posts/2177497172498518

    “If you encounter anyone who says to you that they do not have a residential street address to provide to either the DOT or the tribal government to obtain an ID, please encourage them to reach out to the 911 Coordinator in the county in which their residence exists to start the simple process to have the address assigned. The North Dakota Association of Counties maintains a list of all 53 County 911 Coordinators. A simple phone call to this individual can start this no charge process that can usually be completed in an hour or less when the individual can describe the location of the home. After the address is assigned, the office assigning it will provide a letter upon request that confirms this new address. This letter can be used either to obtain an ID or as supplemental documentation for voting purposes for those individuals whose ID includes a mailing address rather than a residential address. It is worth noting that in some counties the responsibility of assigning addresses is completed by an office other than the 911 Coordinator; however, the 911 Coordinator will be able to connect the individual to that other office and the process will still be no charge and quick.”

    Anyone in the North Dakota circle, please help.

  34. jerry 2018-10-14

    Silrum, who was asked to speak during a meeting of the Tribal Taxation Committee, which included leaders from all five of North Dakota’s tribal nations, said his office has been working to inform tribal leaders about how they can vote.

    If information on an ID is not current, it can be supplemented with other documentation, such as a current utility bill. More information is available at vote.nd.gov.

  35. Jason 2018-10-14

    Jerry,

    That statement is not from the tribe. It covers non tribal voters as well. I believe it was put out by the State of ND.

    Do you and Cory know that the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe covers two States?

    How would the State of ND know if a tribal member living in SD votes in ND using an ID with no address?

  36. jerry 2018-10-14

    “Meanwhile, U.S. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., recently helped introduce the Native Voting Rights Act to increase voter protections in Indian Country. The legislation would establish a Native American Voting Rights Task Force, provide equal access to voter registration and polling sites, require the Department of Justice to consult with tribes and other steps.

    “This isn’t just an issue in North Dakota, it’s an issue across Indian Country,” said Heitkamp, adding she believes the North Dakota legislation was introduced in response to her election.

    She said she thinks the impact of the voter identification requirement has increased interest in voting among Native Americans.

    “They may think that they’ve won. What they’ve done is they have ignited real concern among the Native community,” Heitkamp said.”https://bismarcktribune.com/news/native-voting-rights-group-aims-to-remove-hurdles-in-north/article_d1d42d63-0356-5e9d-b2d4-97f4593aac4d.html

    Indeed, voter suppression seems to be always doing the dirty. The corruption is blatant but that is the way a one party system operates.

  37. Jason 2018-10-14

    I would also like to thank Jerry for quashing the ridiculous racism allegations from the Democrats on this board.

    Which Democrat is going to step up and answer my question above about the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe?

  38. jerry 2018-10-14

    The tribal i.d has your P.O. address with city and state. So if you live in Mobridge, South Dakota, you cannot vote in North Dakota. If you live in St. Petersburg, Russia, you cannot vote in the Moscow, Russia city elections. Go back home, they need you there to pick taters.

  39. Jason 2018-10-14

    Jerry,

    How do the Native Americans not have access to voting sites in Fort Yates?

  40. Jason 2018-10-14

    PO Boxes are not allowed in ND due to the law passed a couple of years ago.

    I would hope they are not allowed in SD either.

    Are you going to correct your false statement above Jerry?

  41. jerry 2018-10-14

    Native’s fight back Native Vote on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/nativevote16/posts/2177497172498518

    “If you encounter anyone who says to you that they do not have a residential street address to provide to either the DOT or the tribal government to obtain an ID, please encourage them to reach out to the 911 Coordinator in the county in which their residence exists to start the simple process to have the address assigned. The North Dakota Association of Counties maintains a list of all 53 County 911 Coordinators. A simple phone call to this individual can start this no charge process that can usually be completed in an hour or less when the individual can describe the location of the home. After the address is assigned, the office assigning it will provide a letter upon request that confirms this new address. This letter can be used either to obtain an ID or as supplemental documentation for voting purposes for those individuals whose ID includes a mailing address rather than a residential address. It is worth noting that in some counties the responsibility of assigning addresses is completed by an office other than the 911 Coordinator; however, the 911 Coordinator will be able to connect the individual to that other office and the process will still be no charge and quick.”

    Anyone in the North Dakota circle, please help.

  42. Debbo 2018-10-14

    Putie’s Cuties love to gaslight. They fail continually. But as long as they get that paytroll check, being a complete and total failure is irrelevant. It is entertaining to watch however.

  43. jerry 2018-10-14

    They are so predictable Ms. Debbo, you can tell which ones they really go after to try to bonus their paytroll, anything that comes to disenfranchisement so close to the vote. Not to worry, we’ve got this.

  44. jerry 2018-10-15

    Current information on helping North Dakota voters https://www.facebook.com/nativevote16/posts/2177497172498518

    “If you encounter anyone who says to you that they do not have a residential street address to provide to either the DOT or the tribal government to obtain an ID, please encourage them to reach out to the 911 Coordinator in the county in which their residence exists to start the simple process to have the address assigned. The North Dakota Association of Counties maintains a list of all 53 County 911 Coordinators. A simple phone call to this individual can start this no charge process that can usually be completed in an hour or less when the individual can describe the location of the home. After the address is assigned, the office assigning it will provide a letter upon request that confirms this new address. This letter can be used either to obtain an ID or as supplemental documentation for voting purposes for those individuals whose ID includes a mailing address rather than a residential address. It is worth noting that in some counties the responsibility of assigning addresses is completed by an office other than the 911 Coordinator; however, the 911 Coordinator will be able to connect the individual to that other office and the process will still be no charge and quick.”

    Anyone in the North Dakota circle, please help.

  45. mike from iowa 2018-10-15

    Back to Pocohontas, Drumpf promised a million bucks to her favorite charity if she could prove Indian ancestry and now he is welshing (what a surprise) on that bet claiming he never said it.

  46. jerry 2018-10-15

    If forced, trump will give to trump foundation, that is how these crooks and liars work.

  47. Debbo 2018-10-15

    “DNA test shows strong evidence of Native American blood in Senator Warren’s family. Don’t you stoopid wingnut liars look stoopid now?”

    By definition, Mike. By definition.

  48. jerry 2018-10-15

    Many many families that have been in the Dakotas for generations, have blood ties to Native blood. They are not enrolled, but they still have the connection.

  49. Rough Rider 2018-10-15

    I find it interesting that many commenters are supplying White Man’s Solutions to this issue.

    So how does a person who lives in a remote area, does not have credit cards or utility bills, and does not have phone service make all your suggestions happen?

  50. mike from iowa 2018-10-15

    Drumpf Dump Foundation was shut down by New York and the state is looking at possible charges against Drumpf for illegal use of funds.

  51. Debbo 2018-10-15

    Rough Rider, those are the solutions this rotten law allows. Do you have other suggestions?

  52. Debbo 2018-10-15

    Pootiepublicans are working hard to take voting rights from other POC too. Latest I’ve heard is the Carolinas. Requiring pasty white solutions is their goal to steal this election.

  53. Rough Rider 2018-10-15

    Debbie, North Dakota Law needs to be changed to allow a Tribal ID of a letter from the Tribal Government.

  54. Debbo 2018-10-15

    So voters in ND need to elect Democrats. They’ll fix it.

  55. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2018-10-15

    Rider, I agree that the best solutions come from the tribes, not from those of us in the oppressor class. That said, until Indians make up a majority of the North Dakota Legislature, one part of the solution will be exactly what you propose, and exactly what my white friend Debbo says will need to happen: Democrats will need to take power in ND, repeal this unnecessary and ill-intended voter suppression law, and allow tribes to issue their own voter IDs according to their own rules.

  56. mike from iowa 2018-10-26

    The Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa challenged the voter ID law in 2016. A district judge ruled that a P.O. box should be OK, but was overruled by the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Judges there accepted the state’s argument that it could lead to people voting in the wrong districts and to fraud.

    https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/in-north-dakota-tribes-scramble-to-clear-gop-voter-id-hurdle

    https://ballotpedia.org/United_States_Court_of_Appeals_for_the_Eighth_Circuit

    You’ll notice this court has a single Dem appointed justice and will be featured in any cases to terminate Roe v Wade because of the makeup. Like the SPOTUS, this court has sold its soul to wingnut agenda.

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