Judge rules ballot petition law unconstitutional

ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP) – A federal judge has ruled a new state law that requires ballot petition circulators to register and be included in a directory is unconstitutional. The organization SD Voice filed a lawsuit to stop the law from taking effect in July.

It required petition circulators to apply with the secretary of state for an identification number, provide personal information and be included in a directory. Attorneys for the state say the law is aimed at preventing fraud.

In a written ruling Thursday, Judge Charles Kornmann declared the measure a violation of the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.