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August 5, 2015

New York Law Journal

By: Jerry H. Goldfeder

Voting rights advocates have been carefully watching state legislatures since 2010—when restrictive voting laws were widely introduced across the country. The 2015 legislative session has been interesting for both what has happened and what has not. At least 113 bills that would restrict access to registration and voting have been introduced or carried over in 33 states. Nearly half the bills are aimed at establishing voter ID requirements or tightening pre-existing ones, but only one has passed thus far. On the other hand, in the same period, at least 464 bills that would enhance access to voting were introduced or carried over in 48 states plus the District of Columbia. While fewer bills restricting access to the ballot box have passed this year than in prior legislative sessions, voting rights are, appropriately, still garnering significant public attention because of high-profile decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court and lower federal courts.

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