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Appeal filed over Tenn. voter ID law

Oct. 4, 2012 at 2:54 PM

MEMPHIS, Oct. 4 (UPI) -- A civil rights attorney filed an emergency appeal to a Tennessee voter ID law a lower court judge said was legal.

Lawyer George Barrett sued on behalf of two registered voters who do not have state-issued photo IDs who he says would be turned away at the polls if the law is implemented in time for November's election. He called the Republican-backed ID law "an unconstitutional impediment on the right to vote," The (Nashville) Tennessean reported Wednesday.

The appeal will be heard in the Tennessee Court of Appeals no later than Oct. 12. Early voting in the state begins Oct. 17.

In the initial ruling, Chancellor Carol McCoy said despite the state's constitution saying only voter registration is needed to vote, "voting procedures have evolved over the years."

Barrett said as many as 390,000 registered voters in the state lack state-issued photo IDs, many of whom are seniors or minorities seen as more likely to support a Democrat, court documents state.

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