It appears that the law applies to everyone except Republicans, at least in Minnesota. The Pawlenty-packed Minnesota Supreme Court ruled for the Republican-controlled Legislature in two cases involving constitutional amendments. In both cases, they voted 4 to 2.
The Minnesota Supreme Court is made up of four appointees from Governor Tim Pawlenty, including one who donated to Norm Coleman’s failed Senatorial campaign, one appointed by former Republican Governor Arne Carlson, one who won in a general election and one who was appointed by Democratic Governor Mark Dayton.
The Court voted against a petition from the League of Women Voters and other groups stating that “the ballot language of the photo ID amendment was so unfair that the amendment should be taken from the ballot.” They also ruled for the Legislature in terms of the proposed titles for both the ID amendment and the marriage amendment.
Minnesota law allows for the Governor to veto an amendment symbolically and then for the Secretary of State to choose a different title.
“Shall the Minnesota Constitution be amended to require all voters to present valid photo identification to vote and to require the state to provide free identification to eligible voters, effective July 1, 2013?”
The League stated that the amendment actually does far more including requiring a government-issued ID, “ID, setting up a system of two-step provisional voting for those without IDs, and changing the way voters’ eligibility and identity are verified.”
The Court stated their intention to act as a rubber stamp for the Legislature by stating “The proper role for the judiciary, however, is not to second-guess the wisdom of policy decisions that the constitution commits to one of the political branches.”
With regards to the marriage amendment, they stated that “The Secretary of State exceeded his authority … when he provided titles different from those passed by the Legislature.” Legally, the Secretary of State had that right. The amendment will now go to the ballot with the disingenuous title “Recognition of Marriage Solely Between One Man and One Woman” instead of the more accurate “Limiting the Status of Marriage to Opposite Sex Couples.”
Of course, Minnesota Republicans want the first title because they want this amendment to pass and damage not only the lives of LGBT Minnesotans, but also the profits and businesses inside the state in an attempt to ruin the economy.