Rule enacted allows election officials to check citizenship status

vote here sign at Lavender Crest

vote here sign at Lavender Crest

A new rule went into effect in Iowa allowing election officials to remove people with questionable citizenship from voter registration lists.

KCCI reports as of Wednesday, March 27 Sec. of State Matt Schultz’ office has the ability to compare voter registration records against federal immigration lists. Schultz said the rule is necessary to reduce voter fraud. Since taking office in 2011, Schultz has made this a key issue and backs the rule.

The program, which the Sec. of State office now has access to is called SAVE. It gives access to immigration status of more than 100 million records from Department of Homeland Security databases.

Any registered voter flagged as a non-citizen will be notified by mail that they may be unlawfully registered and if they want to vote must provide citizenship proof.

Those who disagree with the change argue that it intimidates immigrants who are citizens, potentially discouraging them from voting.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa reported that it has fought Schultz since July of 2012 on the enactment of this rule.

Currently, Colorado, Michigan, and Florida are the other states that have agreements to access the SAVE program.

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