Parties in lawsuit call Ohio purges voter suppression

Ballot box for election. (WDTN Photo/Paul Rodzinka)
(WDTN Photo/Paul Rodzinka)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Groups challenging Ohio’s system for removing inactive voters from rolls are disagreeing with the state elections chief’s arguments and the Trump administration’s contention that the purges are legal.

The American Civil Liberties Union and the New York-based public advocacy group Demos said in their latest U.S. Supreme Court filing that targeting registered voters who fail to vote in a two-year period for eventual removal from the registration rolls, even if they haven’t moved and remain eligible, is a tool for voter suppression.

The court agreed in May to accept Ohio’s appeal over whether its procedures violate the National Voter Registration Act.

The Justice Department under Democratic President Barack Obama sided with the plaintiffs. The Trump administration reversed the government’s position last month and said the system is within the law.

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