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Frank v. Walker

United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit

September 30, 2014

RUTHELLE FRANK, et al., Plaintiffs-Appellees,
v.
SCOTT WALKER, Governor of Wisconsin, et al., Defendants-Appellants. LEAGUE OF UNITED LATIN AMERICAN CITIZENS (LULAC) OF WISCONSIN, et al., Plaintiffs-Appellees,
v.
DAVID G. DEININGER, Member, Government Accountability Board, et al., Defendants-Appellants

Decided September 26, 2014

For LEAGUE OF UNITED LATIN AMERICAN CITIZENS OF WISCONSIN, CROSS LUTHERAN CHURCH, MILWAUKEE AREA LABOR COUNCIL, AFL-CIO, WISCONSIN LEAGUE OF YOUNG VOTERS EDUCATION FUND, Plaintiffs - Appellees (14-2059): Carl Seepe Nadler, Attorney, ARNOLD & PORTER, Washington, DC; John Charles Ulin, Attorney, ARNOLD & PORTER, Los Angeles, CA; Leigh M. Chapman, Esq., Attorney, Katherine Culliton-Gonzalez, Attorney, James Eichner, Attorney, Penda Hair, Attorney, ADVANCEMENT PROJECT, Washington, DC.

For DAVID G. DEININGER, in his official capacity as a member of the Wisconsin, MICHAEL BRENNAN, in his official capacity as a member of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, GERALD NICHOL, in his official capacity as a member of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, THOMAS BARLAND, in his official capacity as a member of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, THOMAS CANE, in his official capacity as a member of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, Defendants - Appellants (14-2059): Clayton P. Kawski, Attorney, Brian Patrick Keenan, Attorney, Maria S. Lazar, Attorney, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, Madison, WI.

For UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Amicus Curiae (14-2059): Erin H. Flynn, Attorney, DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, Washington, DC.

For RUTHELLE FRANK, CARL ELLIS, JUSTIN LUFT, DARTRIC DAVIS, BARBARA ODEN, Plaintiffs - Appellees (14-2058): Craig G. Falls, Attorney, DECHERT LLP, Washington, DC; Karyn Rotker, Attorney, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTY UNION OF WISCONSIN, Milwaukee, WI; Dale Ho, Attorney, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION, New York, NY; Angela M. Liu, Attorney, DECHERT LLP, Chicago, IL; Jeremy Rosen, Attorney, NATIONAL LAW CENTER ON HOMELESSNESS & POVERTY, Washington, DC; Neil A. Steiner, Attorney, DECHERT LLP, New York, NY; Sean Young, Attorney, AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION, New York, NY.

For SCOTT WALKER, in his official capacity as Governor of State of Wisconsin, THOMAS BARLAND, in his official capacity as member of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, GERALD NICHOL, in his official capacity as a member of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, MICHAEL BRENNAN, in his official capacity as a member of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, DAVID G. DEININGER, in his official capacity as a member of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, Defendants - Appellants (14-2058): Clayton P. Kawski, Attorney, Brian Patrick Keenan, Attorney, Maria S. Lazar, Attorney, OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, Madison, WI.

For UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Amicus Curiae (14-2058): Erin H. Flynn, Attorney, DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, Washington, DC.

Before EASTERBROOK, SYKES, and TINDER, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Page 495

ON MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION

Per Curiam.

Last April a district court enjoined the application of 2011 Wis. Act 23, which requires a photo ID for voting, even though Wisconsin's law is comparable to Indiana's, which the Supreme Court upheld in Crawford v. Marion County Election Board, 553 U.S. 181, 128 S.Ct. 1610, 170 L.Ed.2d 574 (2008). After the district court's decision, the Supreme Court of Wisconsin reversed two similar injunctions issued by state courts but ordered state officials to make it easier for registered voters to obtain documentation (such as birth certificates) that they may need to obtain photo IDs, or to waive the documentation requirement if obtaining birth certificates proves difficult or expensive. League of Women Voters v. Walker, 2014 WI 97, 851 N.W.2d 302 (July 31, 2014); Milwaukee Branch of NAACP v. Walker, 2014 WI 98, 851 N.W.2d 262 (July 31, 2014). With the state injunctions lifted, Wisconsin asked us to stay the federal injunction so that it could use the photo ID requirement in this fall's election. After receiving briefs and hearing oral argument on the merits of the state's appeal, we granted the motion for a stay. Plaintiffs ask us to reconsider that decision.

When a court is asked to issue a stay, the first and most important question is whether the ...


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