Election Integrity

The United States is built upon a fair and just election system that must be regulated properly to ensure that American faith and confidence in the system is maintained. As such, the Foundation has argued in multiple cases for a stringent election process that includes safeguards against non-citizens registering to vote or voting. In some cases, this may involve requiring voters to provide proof of citizenship prior to registering to vote (particularly in states that have high non-citizen populations). Although some opponents to these regulations have claimed that the presence of Voter ID laws and similar safeguards are inherently discriminatory, the passage of such a law in North Carolina has been associated with an increase in African American turnout, possibly due to a greater commitment to the process as a result of this extra step in the process.

An additional aspect of the election process that the Foundation has focused on is the formation of voting districts. In some areas of the country, total population counts, which may include illegal immigrants, are used to design voting districts rather than the number of legal resident voters. When this occurs, many districts are left with disproportionately high (or low) levels of election influence and power in the hands of relatively fewer (or larger) number of voters. In a sense, the constitutional rights of many voters are being devalued for living in areas without non-citizen residents. AEF works on a state by state basis to restore district balance.

Read about these Foundation legal actions and more in our Amicus Briefs below.

Case Name:
Kris W. Kobach, et al., v. U. S. Election Assistance Commission, et al.
Date Filed:
04/22/2015
Court:
United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
Foundation Action:

The Foundation again argued in support of the states of Kansas and Arizona that they be allowed to determine whether or not to include on their federal registration form state-specific instructions requiring voters in these two states to provide proof of citizenship prior to registration. We partnered with Judicial Watch on this action.

Verdict:
Loss

Case Name:
Evenwel v. Abbott
Date Filed:
03/06/2015
Court:
U.S. Supreme Court
Foundation Action:

In this case, the Foundation argued against a Texas redistricting rule that drew up districts for the Texas state senate based on total population rather than the number of eligible voters. Because of this rule, voters in districts with large numbers of non-voting eligible residents would receive disproportionately higher power compared to voters in districts with higher numbers of legal residents. We partnered with Judicial Watch on this action.

Verdict:
Loss

Case Name:
League of Women Voters v. NC
Date Filed:
09/17/2014
Court:
U.S. Court of Appeals 4th Circuit
Foundation Action:

Here, AEF argued in support of North Carolina's right to require a photo ID to cast a vote on Election day. We partnered with Judicial Watch on this action.

Verdict:
Loss

Case Name:
Kobach v. EAC 10th Circuit
Date Filed:
07/07/2014
Court:
U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit
Foundation Action:

The Foundation argued in support of the states of Kansas and Arizona that they be allowed to determine whether or not to include on their federal registration form state-specific instructions requiring voters in these two states to provide proof of citizenship prior to registration. We partnered with Judicial Watch on this action.

Verdict:
Loss

Case Name:
State of Louisiana against John Bryson
Date Filed:
01/13/2012
Court:
U.S. Supreme Court
Foundation Action:

Here, the Foundation argued against the federal policy of including unlawfully present aliens in the United States census figures to apportion seats in the House of Representatives. Due to this policy, the State of Louisiana alleges it was deprived of an additional Member of Congress an an additional elector in the Electoral College. We partnered with Judicial Watch on this action.

Verdict:
Loss. On March 19, 2012 the Supreme Court denied Louisiana’s attempt to challenge the inclusion of illegal aliens in census numbers for the purpose of apportionment.

Case Name:
Gonzalez v. State of Arizona
Date Filed:
08/14/2006
Court:
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Foundation Action:

The Foundation argued that an Arizona proposition that voters show ID on election day and that when registering, voters should be required to present proof of citizenship, is constitutional. We partnered with Washington Legal Foundation on this action.

Verdict:
Loss