Republican leaders in the Minnesota House and Senate said today they plan to file paperwork aimed at intervening in the recent lawsuit brought by opponents of the voter ID constitutional amendment.
The decision comes a day after a similar announcement from Minnesota Majority, a group that favors a requirement that people show photo identification before they can vote. Last week, the ACLU and other groups petitioned the Minnesota Supreme Court to remove the amendment question from the ballot due to concerns about the accuracy of its wording.
In a news release, Senate Majority Leader Dave Senjem, R-Rochester, said he thinks the integrity of the election process will be enhanced with the photo ID requirement.
“The Legislature placed this very clear and concise question before the citizens for their judgment in the November election,” Senjem wrote. “With our action today, we intend to protect the right of citizens to vote on this important issue of election integrity.”
House Speaker Kurt Zellers, R-Maple Grove, also weighed in.
“This request is needed to protect the Minnesota Legislature’s right to pass and place constitutional amendments on the ballot,” Zellers explained. “It is unfortunate special interest groups who are opposed to photo ID are using any means necessary to prevent citizens from voting on this important election integrity measure.”
A spokeswoman for Zellers said the Legislature is hiring the Winthrop & Weinstine law firm to handle the matter. She confirmed that taxpayer money will fund the legal action.
According to the release, members of the Legislative Coordinating Commission will meet next week to adopt a formal resolution on the intervention request.
The court has scheduled oral arguments for July 17.