Arizona Taxpayer and Citizen Protection, Proposition 200 (2004)

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Arizona Proposition 200, also known as the Arizona Taxpayer and Citizen Protection Act, was on the November 2, 2004 election ballot in Arizona as an initiated state statute. It was approved.[1]

Elements of the Proposition 200 Law were overturned by the Supreme Court of the United States in 2013.[2]


Attorney General Tom Horne, according to reports, was scheduled to argue in support of the measure on June 21, 2011. The litigation that the measure was facing could possibly overturn the voter-approved law. Horne stated that he would argue that Arizona mandate does not conflict with federal law. He made arguments to an 11 judge panel in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.[3]

The state's law was heard by the United States Supreme Court on March 18, 2013. (Case name: Arizona vs. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona Inc.) According to reports, a decision was expected during the summer of 2013. The Supreme Court was set to decided if a state can require proof of citizenship in all cases of voter registration or just in some.[4][5]

During oral arguments, several justices questioned why the state did not file a lawsuit challenging the U.S. Election Assistance Commission's decision to reject the Arizona law. Horne responded by saying that he was not in office when that decision was made and did not know why the state did not file a lawsuit. He also argued that the federal law does not preempt state voter registration laws, adding that the two laws are not in conflict and actually work together. Plaintiffs, however, argued that the two laws are in conflict because Arizona's legislation required compliance with the state's regulations before acceptance of the federal form.[6]

On Monday, June 17, the Supreme Court struck down the parts of Proposition 200 that required proof of citizenship from individuals who use a federal voter registration form to vote. Essentially, the court rejected the state's attempt to require more from voters than what is prescribed by the National Voter Registration Act. In addition, the court did not specifically say that the state could not request proof of citizenship when registering with state forms instead of federal ones. The court did, however, allow the state to retain its requirement that voters show identification at polling places before casting their ballots.[2]

Election results

Taxpayer and Citizen Protection
Approveda Yes 1,041,741 55.6%
Election results from Arizona Elections Department.

Text of measure

The language that appeared on the ballot:

Proposition 200 would require that evidence of United States citizenship be presented by every person to register to vote, that proof of identification be presented by every voter at the polling place prior to voting, that state and local governments verify the identity of all applicants for certain public benefits and that government employees report United States immigration law violations by applicants for public benefits.

Proposition 200 provides that for purposes of registering to vote, satisfactory evidence of United States citizenship includes: - an Arizona driver or nonoperating identification license issued after October 1, 1996. - a driver or nonoperating identification license issued by another state if the license indicates that the person has provided proof of United States citizenship. - a copy of the applicant's birth certificate. - a United States passport, or a copy of the pertinent pages of the passport. - United States naturalization documents or a verified certificate of naturalization number. - a Bureau of Indian Affairs card number, tribal treaty card number or tribal enrollment number. - other documents or methods of proof that may be established by the federal government for the purpose of verifying employment eligibility.

The county recorder shall indicate this information in the person's permanent voter file for at least two years. A voter registration card from another county or state does not constitute satisfactory evidence of United States citizenship. A person who is registered to vote on the date that Proposition 200 becomes effective is not required to submit evidence of citizenship unless the person moves to a different county. Once a person has submitted sufficient evidence of citizenship, the person is not required to resubmit the evidence when making changes to voter registration information in the county where the evidence has been submitted.

Proposition 200 requires that prior to receiving a ballot at a polling place, a voter must present either one form of identification that contains the name, address and photograph of the person or two different forms of identification that contain the name and address of the person.

Proposition 200 requires that a state or local governmental entity that is responsible for administering "state and local public benefits that are not federally mandated" must: - verify the identity and eligibility for each applicant for the public benefits. - provide other state and local government employees with information to verify immigration status of applicants applying for public benefits and must also assist other state and local government employees in obtaining immigration status information from federal immigration authorities. - refuse to accept any state or local government identification card, including a driver license, to establish identity or eligibility for public benefits unless the governmental entity that issued the card has verified the immigration status of the applicant. - require all state and local government employees to make a written report to federal immigration authorities upon discovering a violation of federal immigration laws by an applicant for public benefits. An employee or supervisor who fails to make the required report is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor, potentially punishable by a jail sentence of up to 4 months and a fine of up to $750, plus applicable surcharges.

Any resident of this state would have standing to bring a court action against the state, a local governmental entity or an agent of a state or local governmental entity to remedy a violation of the public benefits verification law including bringing an action to compel a government official to comply with the law.

Proposition 200 does not define the term "state and local public benefits that are not federally mandated."[7] [8]

Campaign finance


  • Protect Arizona Now spent $523,376,
  • Protect Arizona Now spent $523,376,
  • Yes On Proposition 200 spent $260,357,
  • Citizens for Proposition 200 spent $4,655[9]


  • No On 200 Arizonans for Real Immigration Reform spent $1,375,368,
  • Arizona United for Immigration Reform spent $960,922,
  • Statute of Liberty Coalition spent $38,580,
  • Arizonans Against Prop 200 spent $37,596,
  • Campaign to Defeat Prop 200 spent $29,783,
  • No On 200 Defend Arizona's Democracy spent $5,453

See also

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