An appeals court on Tuesday night ordered an early end to an extension of Arizona’s voter registration deadline that was issued by a judge after pandemic restrictions led to a decrease in people registering to vote.
The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals said voter registration will end on Thursday, instead of Oct. 23. The conclusion from the court was that the extension posed a significant administrative burden on election officials who are now working on early voting.
Arizona recorded more than 43,000 new registrations in the week since the deadline was extended.
People who have completed registrations during the extension period will be allowed to vote in the Nov. 3 general election. The appeals court also gave Arizonans a two-day grace period to complete their registrations.
Arizona’s original registration deadline was October 5th. However, U.S. District Judge Steven Logan extended the deadline to Oct. 23 after finding the pandemic has been preventing a portion of the population from registering to vote and concluding that pushing back the deadline would let the voices of those people be heard.
In arguing for the extension, advocacy groups have said its number of weekly registrations had plummeted because of the pandemic’s restrictions. Although those figures have returned to almost the same level as before the pandemic.
Opponents of the extended registration deadline have argued Arizona’s registration deadline, which is 29 days before election day, has been in place for 30 years and cited the state’s elections director as saying an extension could lead to administrative problems for elections officials.