New ID requirements for voting take effect for primary

In 2004, Arizona voters passed Proposition 200, the "Arizona Taxpayer and Citizen Protection Act." This Act changed the process for voting at the polls. New voter identification procedures for all voters will be used at the primary election in September.

Navajo voters living on the Navajo Reservation will be subject to these new requirements unless the measure is enjoined by the courts. Because the new identification requirements for voting at the polls are particularly burdensome to the Navajo people, the Navajo Nation filed a complaint in federal district court challenging the use of this new voter identification law in polling places on the Navajo Reservation.

Before Proposition 200, a voter needed only to announce his or her name to receive a ballot at the polls. The new act requires voters to provide "one form of identification that bears the name, address and photograph of the elector or two different forms of identification that bear the name and address of the elector" in order to receive a ballot at the polls.

The Secretary of State has listed the following forms of identification acceptable for voting at the polls:

• State, tribal, or federal photo identification card.

• If a photo identification cannot be provided, two of the following forms of identification--containing the name and address of the elector are acceptable:

• a utility bill;

• a bank or credit union statement;

• a valid Arizona vehicle registration;

• an Indian census number;

• a property tax statement for the elector's residence;

• a tribal enrollment card or other form of tribal identification,

• a vehicle insurance card; or

• a recorder's certificate, or a valid United States federal, state or local government issued identification, including a voter registration card issued by the county recorder.

• The name and address on the identification must match the name and address on the voter registration rolls.

• If a voter fails to have any of the above-listed items, the individual can vote a provisional ballot if he identifies himself as Native American and displays a tribal identification card.

• If a voter lacks acceptable identification, he will need to return to the county recorder's office with identification in order for his vote to be counted.

If you know of a Navajo voter who may not meet these new voter identification requirements, please contact Leila Help-Tulley at the Navajo Nation Office of the Speaker, 928-871-7160.

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