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Latinos, Groups Close Ranks Against Wisconsin Voter ID Law

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A broad group of Latino, black, civil rights and other advocacy groups are urging the U.S. Supreme Court to hear a challenge of Wisconsin’s voter ID law.

According to a brief filed by several of the Latino groups, Hispanics in the state are more likely to face language difficulties and other hurdles in trying to get a photo ID or documentation to obtain one.

Among the groups are the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, Latino Justice PRLDEF, the Hispanic National Bar Association and the Congressional Black Caucus. The League of United Latin American Citizens was a plaintiff in one of the cases that is being appealed to the court.

An appeals court upheld the Wisconsin law after a lower court had blocked it.

Kathy Culliton-Gonzalez, senior attorney and Director of Voter Protection at the Advancement Project said the “friend of the court” briefs filed by the groups “connect the dots between our nation’s vicious history of voter disenfranchisement and the urgency to fight modern-day tactics that make it harder for people of color to vote.”

Some prefer the high court pass on the case and focus on a case challenging the Texas Voter ID law.

The Advancement Project, which contacted groups for briefs, ran out of time and did not contact the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Culiton-Gonzalez said.

CHC Chairwoman Linda Sanchez, D-Calif., told NBC Latino the caucus is “100 percent committed to eliminating restrictive voting ID laws in our country."

The Supreme Court is expected to consider in March whether to take the case.


--Suzanne Gamboa