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2020 Dems back repeal of controversial New Hampshire voting law

2020 Dems back repeal of controversial New Hampshire voting law
© Greg Nash

Democratic presidential hopefuls are lining up behind a push by Sen. Jeanne ShaheenCynthia (Jeanne) Jeanne ShaheenBowser on Manchin's DC statehood stance: He's 'not right' If Taliban regains power, they would roll back rights for women: US intelligence Manchin says he doesn't support DC statehood, election reform bills MORE (D-N.H.) to oppose a New Hampshire law that would require college students be permanent residents to vote.

Shaheen sent a letter on Monday asking 2020 Democratic White House hopefuls to sign a petition opposing the law, which will go into effect in July. It requires out-of-state residents like college students to pay to obtain a state driver’s license and register their cars within 60 days of casting a ballot.

Several 2020 candidates quickly backed Shaheen's effort to build opposition to the state law, which is being challenged in court, arguing it limits who can participate in the crucial early primary that will help shape the crowded Democratic field.

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Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisHarris says Mexico, US can work together to improve quality of life in Northern Triangle Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms says 'it is time to pass the baton on to someone else' Harris's uncle discusses COVID-19 surge in India: 'The conditions are pretty bad' MORE (D-Calif.) said on Monday that the New Hampshire law, signed by Gov. Chris Sununu (R) last year, "is intended to disenfranchise college students from."

"The New Hampshire voter suppression law is intended to disenfranchise college students from exercising their right to vote," Harris said in a tweet.

 

Sen. Cory BookerCory BookerBush testifies before Congress about racist treatment Black birthing people face during childbirth, pregnancy Tim Scott sparks buzz in crowded field of White House hopefuls Never underestimate Joe Biden MORE (D-N.J.), another 2020 candidate, added that protecting a student's "right to vote is paramount."

 

Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharStrengthen CBP regulations to reduce opioid deaths Why isn't Washington defending American companies from foreign assaults? Republicans float support for antitrust reform after Trump Facebook ban upheld MORE (D-Minn.), Sen. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten GillibrandAustin tight lipped on whether to take sexual assault cases out of commanders' hands Gillibrand touts legislation to lower drug costs: This idea 'is deeply bipartisan' A bipartisan effort to prevent the scourge of sexual assault in the armed forces MORE (D-N.Y.) and former Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeO'Rourke clarifies remarks, leaves door open to gubernatorial bid O'Rourke says he's not planning on run for Texas governor O'Rourke slams Cruz for video of border visit MORE (D-Texas) are also throwing their support behind Shaheen, who formerly served as governor of New Hampshire.

O'Rourke called the state law "wrong" and "must be overturned," while Gillibrand said she is supporting "efforts to amend and repeal this bill."

 

The New Hampshire House passed a bill last month to reverse the new requirements. It still needs to pass the state Senate, which held a hearing on the proposal earlier this month, before it would be sent to Sununu.

"The last time I checked people don’t want to give up their freedom to vote. We could make it even easier if we passed my bill to register every eligible young person when they turn 18!" Klobuchar added.

Currently, New Hampshire law requires that registered voters only prove "domicile" rather than permanent residency. But Republicans have stewed over the state's voter registration laws for years.

Trump, who lost the state to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonMcConnell: Taliban could take over Afghanistan by 'the end of the year' Hillary Clinton: There must be a 'global reckoning' with disinformation Pelosi's archbishop calls for Communion to be withheld from public figures supporting abortion rights MORE, has claimed that "thousands" of people were brought into the state from Massachusetts to vote in 2016.

"If you look at what happened in New Hampshire, where thousands of people came up and voted from a very liberal part of Massachusetts and they came up in buses and they voted," Trump told The Daily Caller last year.

A months-long investigation by New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner, a Democrat elected to his post by the Republican-led legislature, and the state's Justice Department found no evidence of widespread fraud.

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenDebate over ICBMs: Will 'defund our defenses' be next? Manchin on collision course with Warren, Sanders Hillicon Valley: Broadband companies funded fake net neutrality comments, investigation finds | Twitter rolls out tip feature | Google to adopt 'hybrid work week' MORE (D-Mass.), who is running for the party's nomination, called the New Hampshire law "wrong."


Shaheen, in her letter, argued that the new requirements amount to a "poll tax" that is trying to "subvert voting rights."

"They are being disenfranchised by photo ID requirements, arbitrary challenges to residency, and unfounded allegations of fraud. This new law, by effectively creating a poll tax on college students, is just the latest attempt to undermine Americans’ constitutionally-protected right to vote," Shaheen wrote in the letter to the party's presidential contenders.