Louisiana is discriminating against naturalized citizens by requiring them to provide citizenship documents when registering to vote – a requirement that is not asked of other potential voters who must simply swear they are U.S. citizens, according to a federal lawsuit filed today by two civil rights groups.
The lawsuit by the Fair Elections Legal Network and the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) was filed on behalf of three naturalized citizens who must meet the requirement, which dates back to 1874. VAYLA New Orleans, a nonprofit organization that has attempted to register voters, is also a plaintiff.
The complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana, can be viewed here. The groups also filed a motion for a preliminary injunction to put this requirement on hold as the case proceeds.