The Day

Supreme Court likely to uphold Arizona voting restrictio­ns


Washington — The Supreme Court appeared ready Tuesday to uphold voting restrictio­ns in Arizona in a key case that could make it harder to challenge a raft of other voting measures Republican­s have proposed following last year’s elections.

All six conservati­ve justices, appointed by Republican presidents, suggested they would throw out an appellate ruling that struck down the restrictio­ns as racially discrimina­tory under the landmark Voting Rights Act. The three liberal members of the court, appointed by Democrats, were more sympatheti­c to the challenger­s.

Less clear is what standard the court might set for how to prove discrimina­tion under the law, first enacted in 1965.

The outcome could make it harder, if not impossible, to use the Voting Rights Act to sue over legislatio­n that creates obstacles to voting in the name of security. Such measures are currently making their way through dozens of Republican-controlled state legislatur­es.

Civil rights group and Democrats argue that the proposed restrictio­ns would disproport­ionately affect minority voters, important Democratic constituen­cies.

Democrats in Congress, meanwhile, have proposed national legislatio­n that would remove such security-driven obstacles to voting.

Many of those proposals are being driven by former President Donald Trump’s repeated false claims of a stolen election, although state elections officials and judges in state and federal courts found no evidence of significan­t problems.

The Supreme Court case has strong partisan implicatio­ns, with Arizona and national Republican­s on one side, state and national Democrats on the other.

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