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Real News From The Blaze:' Campaigns Watch Florida as DOJ and Federal Judge Block Provisions to Address Voter Fraud

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Since 1960, no candidate has made it to the White House without frist winning two of the three following states: Pennsylvania, Ohio and Florida. Given this and incumbent challenger Mitt Romney's slight lead in the recent Sunshine State polling, the news coming out of Florida late this week has become all the more important to national political observers.

On Thursday, a federal judge blocked key provisions to a new Florida voter registration law, heating the debate around regulations which Republicans advocate to combat voter fraud, and Democrats allege are aimed at keeping minorities away from the polls. U.S. District Judge Robert L. Hinkle said in his ruling that a provision requiring voter registration names to be filed within 48 hours was “harsh and impractical” and that it would serve no purpose other than to restrict the free exercise of democracy. Within hours of that ruling, the Department of Justice ordered the state to halt it's separate effort to purge noncitizens from its voter rolls. The measure had been administered by the state to prevent ineligible voters from being able to cast a ballot, but the Justice Department's lead civil rights lawyer writes that the effort appears to violate both the 1965 Voting Rights Act and the 1993 National Voter Registration Act.

The two stories put increased focus on campaigning within the pivotal general election swing state, but also continue the growing national discussion on laws aimed at stopping voter fraud. On "Real News" Friday the panel debated whether the Florida regulations take on a legitimate problem, and whether the laws aimed at combating voter fraud achieve more harm than good.

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