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Court bars state in Native voting rights case

The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals issued an injunction against the state of South Dakota on Wednesday, ordering the state to seek federal review before implementing a new state law.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit on behalf of several tribal members. They say Charles Mix County created districts that violate Native voting rights.

A new state law would have allowed the districts to go into effect without federal review, the ACLU said. The state said it didn't have to seek approval because Native voters don't make up a majority in the county.

But the 8th Circuit ruled that the state has been intentionally violating the federal Voting Rights Act when it comes to Native Americans. "Plaintiffs have shown that for over 25 years defendants have intended to violate and have violated the preclearance requirements of the VRA," a three-judge panel said [Ruling].

Get the Story:
Feds must OK S.D. districting laws (The Sioux Falls Argus Leader 7/15)
Three-Judge Panel Rules Unanimously in Favor of Native American Voters in South Dakota (ACLU 7/14)

Related Stories:
Editorial: Stop stalling on Native voting rights (7/14)
Lawmakers set for appeal of voting rights case (7/12)
Lawmakers weigh appeal of voting rights case (7/11)
South Dakota Supreme Court to hear voting rights case (03/16)
Indian voters oppose bill aimed at settling lawsuit (03/01)
Suit challenges South Dakota county's voting districts (01/28)
South Dakota court takes voting rights question (01/24)
Editorial: Stop delaying Native voting rights case (12/16)
South Dakota Indians seek action on voting rights (12/13)
South Dakota seeks delay in Native voting case (11/02)
Editorial: Don't appeal Indian voting rights case (09/28)
Judge: South Dakota violated Indian voting rights (09/16)
Federal judge to issue voting rights ruling this summer (05/04)
ACLU rests case in Indian voting rights trial (04/23)
S.D. Indians testify of racism in voting rights trial (04/15)
Trial into Indian voting rights in South Dakota continues (4/14)
Trial examines Indian voting rights in South Dakota (4/13)