Supreme Court Blocks Wisconsin Voter ID Law

The Supreme Court has blocked the implementation of a Wisconsin voter ID law that triggered an intense legal battle and conflicting court rulings. In an unusual late-evening action on Oct. 9, the court issued an unsigned, two-paragraph decision — the first paragraph being the ruling of the six-justice majority and the second a dissent from Justice Samuel Alito. The decision set aside the Sept. 12 ruling of a federal appeals court that had blocked a U.S. District Court judge’s order preventing enforcement of …

Federal Appeals Court Upholds Wisconsin Voter ID Law

A three-judge federal appeals court panel has unanimously upheld Wisconsin’s controversial voter ID law, which had been the focus of earlier conflicting federal and state court rulings. >> AARP Voter Education Guide The order from the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, handed down on Sept. 12 just a few hours after the judges heard arguments in the case, found that Wisconsins law was “materially identical” to an Indiana photo ID law that the Supreme Court upheld in 2008. The judges …

Federal Judge Strikes Down Wisconsin Voter ID Law

A federal judge in Milwaukee has struck down Wisconsin’s voter ID law, holding that it unconstitutionally discriminates against low-income and minority voters, who are less likely to have photo IDs or the documents needed to obtain them. U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman’s decision comes less than a week after a state judge declared a new Arkansas law requiring voters to show government- or college-issued photo IDs for their ballots to count to be “void and unenforceable.” (Days later, the Arkansas …

The Cost of Not Expanding Medicaid

States have divided almost evenly on whether to expand Medicaid to millions more low-income Americans, many of them uninsured. Many Republican governors or state legislatures have rejected expansion, saying that although the federal government will pick up most of the tab now, states could be left on the hook in the future. Sign up for the AARP Health Newsletter And although expansion aims for low-income people, “you’re expanding coverage for graduate students and Starbucks baristas,” says Edmund Haislmaier, senior research fellow at the Heritage …

Affordable Housing for LGBT Older Adults on the Rise

Until recently, if you were older, gay, and low-income, finding housing would have proven elusive. That is beginning to change. This month, a six-story affordable housing apartment building for gay, lesbian and transgendered adults over age 62 has opened in downtown Philadelphia. It offers heath services and events under its roof to residents who live in the 56 one-bedroom units. The John C. Anderson Apartments, as it is known, is part of a growing trend of similar LGBT senior housing …

Not Enough Households Staying Warm With LIHEAP

Low-income households often face challenges in keeping pace with rising energy costs. A recent study shows that despite federal assistance amounting to $3.4 billion, in the winter of 2011-12 low-income households were left struggling to pay $35.1 billion in energy costs. The federal government helps eligible low-income households maintain adequate energy mainly through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). LIHEAP serves to protect eligible families by helping keep their homes warm during winter and cool during summer. Although …