Text: S.3543 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in Senate (10/03/2018)

 
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[S. 3543 Introduced in Senate (IS)]

<DOC>






115th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                S. 3543

   To protect the voting rights of Native American and Alaska Native 
                                voters.


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

            October 3 (legislative day, September 28), 2018

 Mr. Udall (for himself, Ms. Warren, Ms. Heitkamp, Ms. Klobuchar, Ms. 
 Cortez Masto, Ms. Smith, Ms. Harris, Mrs. Feinstein, Mr. Van Hollen, 
 Mr. Tester, Mr. Booker, Mr. Heinrich, and Ms. Hirono) introduced the 
 following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on 
                             the Judiciary

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
   To protect the voting rights of Native American and Alaska Native 
                                voters.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Native American Voting Rights Act of 
2018''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSES.

    (a) Findings.--Congress finds the following:
            (1) The Constitution explicitly and implicitly grants 
        Congress broad general powers to legislate on issues relating 
        to Indian Tribes, powers consistently described as plenary and 
        exclusive. These powers arise from the grant of authority in 
        the Indian Commerce Clause and through legislative matters 
        arising under the Treaty Clause.
            (2) The Federal Government is responsible for upholding the 
        obligations that the Federal Government has agreed to through 
        treaties, legislation, and Executive orders, referred to as the 
        Federal trust responsibility toward Indian Tribes and their 
        members.
            (3) The Supreme Court has repeatedly relied on the nature 
        of this ``government to government'' relationship between the 
        United States and sovereign Indian Tribes for congressional 
        authority to enact ``legislation that singles out Indians for 
        particular and special treatment.'' Morton v. Mancari, 417 U.S. 
        535, 554-555 (1974).
            (4) Legislation removing barriers to Native American voting 
        is vital for the fulfillment of Congress's ``unique 
        obligation'' toward Indians, particularly ensuring that Native 
        American voters are fully included as ``qualified members of 
        the modern body politic.'' Board of County Comm'rs v. Seber, 
        318 U.S. 705, 715 (1943).
            (5) Under the Elections Clause of article I, section 4 of 
        the Constitution, Congress has additional power to regulate any 
        election conducted at least in part to select Members of 
        Congress. Taken together, the Indian Commerce Clause and the 
        Election Clause give Congress broad authority to enact 
        legislation to safeguard the voting rights of Native American 
        voters.
            (6) Despite Congress's decision to grant Native Americans 
        Federal citizenship, and with it the protections of the 
        Fifteenth Amendment, with passage of the Act of June 2, 1924 
        (Public Law 68-233; 43 Stat. 253) (commonly known as the 
        ``Indian Citizenship Act of 1924''), States continued to deploy 
        distinct methods for disenfranchising Indians by enacting 
        statutes to exclude from voter rolls Indians living on 
        reservations, requiring that Indians first terminate their 
        relationship with their Indian Tribe, restricting the right to 
        vote on account of a Tribal member's ``guardianship'' status, 
        and imposing literacy tests.
            (7) Barriers to voter access for Native Americans persist 
        today, and such barriers range from obstructing voter access, 
        to vote dilution and intentional malapportionment of electoral 
        districts.
            (8) The Native American Voting Rights Coalition's recent 9 
        field hearings in Indian Country and 4-State survey of voter 
        discrimination revealed a number of additional obstacles that 
        Native Americans must overcome in some States, including--
                    (A) a lack of accessible registration and polling 
                sites, either due to conditions such as geography, lack 
                of paved roads, the absence of reliable and affordable 
                broadband connectivity, and restrictions on the time 
                and place that people can register and vote, and the 
                manner in which people can register and vote, including 
                unequal opportunities for absentee, early, mail-in, and 
                in-person voting;
                    (B) nontraditional addresses for residents on 
                Indian reservations, which make voter registration, 
                acquisition of mail-in ballots, and securing required 
                identification difficult, if not impossible;
                    (C) inadequate language assistance for Tribal 
                members, including lack of outreach and publicity, the 
                failure to provide complete, accurate, and uniform 
                translations of all voting materials in the relevant 
                Native language, and an insufficient number of trained 
                bilingual poll workers; and
                    (D) voter identification laws that discriminate 
                against Native Americans.
            (9) The Department of Justice and courts have also 
        recognized that some jurisdictions have been unresponsive to 
        reasonable requests from federally recognized Indian Tribes for 
        more accessible voter registration sites and in-person voting 
        locations.
            (10) According to the National Congress of American 
        Indians, there is a wide gap between the voter registration and 
        turnout rates of eligible American Indians and Alaska Natives, 
        and the voter registration and turnout rates of non-Hispanic 
        White and other racial and ethnic groups.
            (11) Despite these obstacles, the Native American vote 
        continues to play a significant role in national, State, and 
        local elections.
            (12) In Alaska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and South Dakota, 
        Native Americans comprise approximately 10 percent or more of 
        the voting population.
            (13) The Native American vote also holds great potential, 
        with over 1,000,000 voters who are eligible to vote, but are 
        not registered to vote.
    (b) Purposes.--The purposes of this Act are--
            (1) to fulfill the Federal Government's trust 
        responsibility to protect and promote Native Americans' 
        exercise of their constitutionally guaranteed right to vote, 
        including the right to register to vote and the ability to 
        access all mechanisms for voting;
            (2) to establish preclearance procedures for a specific 
        subset of State actions that have been used to restrict access 
        to the polls on Indian lands;
            (3) to expand voter registration under the National Voter 
        Registration Act of 1993 (52 U.S.C. 20506 et seq.) to cover all 
        Federal facilities, at the request of the Indian tribe;
            (4) to afford equal treatment to forms of identification 
        unique to Indian Tribes and their members;
            (5) to clarify the obligations of States and political 
        subdivisions regarding the provision of translated voting 
        materials for American Indians and Alaska Natives under section 
        203 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. 10503);
            (6) to provide Tribal leaders with a direct pathway to 
        request Federal election observers, and to allow public access 
        to the reports of those election observers; and
            (7) to direct the Department of Justice to consult on an 
        annual basis with Indian Tribes on issues related to voting.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

    In this Act:
            (1) Indian.--The term ``Indian'' has the meaning given the 
        term in section 4 of the Indian Self-Determination and 
        Education Assistance Act (25 U.S.C. 5304).
            (2) Indian lands.--The term ``Indian lands'' includes--
                    (A) any Indian country of an Indian Tribe, as 
                defined under section 1151 of title 18, United States 
                Code;
                    (B) any land in Alaska owned, pursuant to the 
                Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 1601 et 
                seq.), by an Indian Tribe that is a Native village (as 
                defined in section 3 of that Act (43 U.S.C. 1602)) or 
                by a Village Corporation that is associated with an 
                Indian Tribe (as defined in section 3 of that Act (43 
                U.S.C. 1602));
                    (C) any land on which the seat of the Tribal 
                Government is located; and
                    (D) any land that is part or all of a Tribal 
                designated statistical area associated with an Indian 
                Tribe, or is part or all of an Alaska Native village 
                statistical area associated with an Indian Tribe, as 
                defined by the Census Bureau for the purposes of the 
                most recent decennial census.
            (3) Indian tribe.--The term ``Indian Tribe'' has the 
        meaning given the term ``Indian tribe'' in section 4 of the 
        Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (25 
        U.S.C. 5304).
            (4) Tribal government.--The term ``Tribal Government'' 
        means the recognized governing body of an Indian Tribe.

SEC. 4. ESTABLISHMENT OF A NATIVE AMERICAN VOTING TASK FORCE GRANT 
              PROGRAM.

    (a) In General.--The Office for Civil Rights at the Office of 
Justice Programs of the Department of Justice (referred to in this 
section as the ``Office'') shall establish and administer, in 
coordination with the Department of the Interior, a Native American 
voting task force grant program, through which the Office shall provide 
financial assistance to eligible applicants to enable those eligible 
applicants to establish and operate a Native American Voting Task Force 
in each State with a federally recognized Indian Tribe.
    (b) Purpose.--The purpose of the Native American voting task force 
grant program is to--
            (1) increase voter outreach, education, registration, and 
        turnout in Native American communities;
            (2) increase access to the ballot for Native American 
        communities, including additional satellite, early voting, and 
        absentee voting locations;
            (3) streamline and reduce inconsistencies in the voting 
        process for Native Americans;
            (4) provide, in the community's dominant language, 
        educational materials and classes on Indian lands about 
        candidacy filing;
            (5) train and educate State and local employees, including 
        poll workers, about--
                    (A) the language assistance and voter assistance 
                requirements under sections 203 and 208 of the Voting 
                Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. 10503; 10508); and
                    (B) voter identification laws under section 8 of 
                this Act;
            (6) identify model programs and best practices for 
        providing language assistance to Native American communities;
            (7) provide non-partisan poll watchers on election day in 
        Native American communities;
            (8) participate in and evaluate future redistricting 
        efforts;
            (9) address issues of internet connectivity as it relates 
        to voter registration and ballot access in Native American 
        communities; and
            (10) facilitate collaboration between local election 
        officials, Native American communities, and Tribal elections 
        offices.
    (c) Eligible Applicant.--The term ``eligible applicant'' means--
            (1) an Indian Tribe;
            (2) a Secretary of State of a State, or another official of 
        a State entity responsible for overseeing elections;
            (3) a nonprofit organization that works, in whole or in 
        part, on voting issues; or
            (4) a consortium of one or more of the entities described 
        in paragraphs (1) through (3).
    (d) Application and Selection Process.--
            (1) In general.--The Office, in coordination with the 
        Department of the Interior and following consultation with 
        Indian Tribes about the implementation of the Native American 
        voting task force grant program, shall establish guidelines for 
        the process by which eligible applicants will submit 
        applications.
            (2) Applications.--Each eligible applicant desiring a grant 
        under this section shall submit an application, according to 
        the process established under paragraph (1), and at such time, 
        in such manner, and containing such information as the Attorney 
        General may require. Such application shall include--
                    (A) a certification that the applicant is an 
                eligible applicant;
                    (B) a proposed work plan addressing how the 
                eligible applicant will establish and administer a 
                Native American Voting Task Force that achieves the 
                purposes described in subsection (b);
                    (C) if the eligible applicant is a consortium as 
                described in subsection (c)(4), a description of the 
                proposed division of responsibilities between the 
                participating entities; and
                    (D) an explanation of the time period that the 
                proposed Native American Voting Task Force will cover, 
                which shall be a time period that is not more than 3 
                years.
    (e) Uses of Funds.--A grantee receiving funds under this section 
shall use such funds to carry out one or more of the activities 
described in subsection (b), through the grantee's Native American 
Voting Task Force.
    (f) Relationship With Other Laws.--Nothing in this section reduces 
State or local obligations provided for by the Voting Rights Act of 
1965 (52 U.S.C. 10301 et seq.), the National Voter Registration Act of 
1993 (52 U.S.C. 20501 et seq.), the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (52 
U.S.C. 20901 et seq.), or any other Federal law or regulation related 
to voting or the electoral process.
    (g) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated to carry out this section $10,000,000 for each of fiscal 
years 2019 through 2034.

SEC. 5. TRIBAL DESIGNATED VOTER REGISTRATION SITES.

    Section 7(a) of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (52 
U.S.C. 20506(a)) is amended--
            (1) in paragraph (2)--
                    (A) in subparagraph (A), by striking ``and'' after 
                the semicolon;
                    (B) in subparagraph (B), by striking the period at 
                the end and inserting a semicolon; and
                    (C) by adding at the end the following:
                    ``(C) at the request of an Indian Tribe, any 
                Federal facility or federally funded facility that is 
                primarily engaged in providing services to Indian 
                Tribes and that provides such services to the 
                requesting Indian Tribe; and
                    ``(D) at the request of an Indian Tribe, not less 
                than one Federal facility or federally funded facility 
                that is located on the Indian lands of the requesting 
                Indian Tribe (which may be the Federal facility or 
                federally funded facility described in subparagraph 
                (C)).''; and
            (2) by adding at the end the following:
            ``(8) Where practicable, each Federal agency that operates 
        a Federal facility or a federally funded facility that is 
        subject to the provisions of paragraph (2) (C) or (D), shall 
        designate one or more special days at a centralized location 
        within the boundaries of the Indian lands of each applicable 
        Indian Tribe for the purpose of informing members of the Indian 
        Tribe of the timing, registration requirements, and voting 
        procedures in elections for Federal office, at no cost to the 
        Indian Tribe.''.

SEC. 6. ACCESSIBLE TRIBAL DESIGNATED POLLING SITES.

    (a) In General.--
            (1) Designation of state officer.--Each of the several 
        States whose territory contains all or part of an Indian 
        Tribe's Indian lands shall designate for each Indian Tribe an 
        officer within that State who will be responsible for 
        compliance with the provisions of section. The State shall 
        provide written notice to each such Indian Tribe of the officer 
        so designated.
            (2) Provision of polling places.--For each Indian Tribe 
        that satisfies the obligations of subsection (c), and for each 
        election for a Federal official that is held 180 days or later 
        after the date on which the Indian Tribe initially satisfies 
        such obligations, any State or political subdivision whose 
        territory contains all or part of an Indian Tribe's Indian 
        lands--
                    (A) shall provide a minimum of one polling place 
                for each precinct in which there are eligible voters 
                who reside on Indian lands, in a location selected by 
                the Indian Tribe and at no cost to the Indian Tribe;
                    (B) shall provide, at no cost to the Indian Tribe, 
                additional polling places in locations selected by an 
                Indian Tribe if, based on the totality of circumstances 
                described in subsection (b), it is shown that not 
                providing those additional polling places would result 
                in members of the Indian Tribe and individuals residing 
                on the Indian Tribe's Indian lands having less 
                opportunity to vote than eligible voters in that State 
                or political subdivision who are not members of an 
                Indian Tribe and do not reside on Indian lands;
                    (C) shall, at each polling place located on Indian 
                lands and at no cost to the Indian Tribe, make voting 
                machines, tabulation machines, ballots, provisional 
                ballots, and other voting materials available to the 
                same extent that such equipment and materials are made 
                available at other polling places in the State or 
                political subdivision that are not located on Indian 
                lands;
                    (D) shall, at each polling place located on Indian 
                lands, conduct the election using the same voting 
                procedures that are used at other polling places in the 
                State or political subdivision that are not located on 
                Indian lands;
                    (E) shall, at each polling place located on Indian 
                lands, provide training, compensation, and other 
                benefits to election officials and poll workers at no 
                cost to the Indian Tribe and to the same extent that 
                such training, compensation, and benefits are provided 
                to election officials and poll workers at other polling 
                places in the State or political subdivision that are 
                not located on Indian lands;
                    (F) shall cooperate in good faith with the efforts 
                of the Indian Tribe to satisfy the requirements of 
                subsection (c); and
                    (G) may fulfill the State's obligations under 
                subparagraphs (A) and (B) by relocating existing 
                polling places, by creating new polling places, or 
                both.
    (b) Equitable Opportunities To Vote.--When assessing the 
opportunities to vote provided to members of an Indian tribe and to 
other eligible voters in the State residing on Indian lands in order to 
determine the number of additional polling places (if any) that a State 
or political subdivision must provide in accordance with subsection 
(a)(2)(B), the State, political subdivision, and any court applying 
this section, shall consider the totality of circumstances of--
            (1) the number of voting-age citizens assigned to each 
        polling place;
            (2) the distances that voters must travel to reach the 
        polling places;
            (3) the time that voters must spend traveling to reach the 
        polling places, including under inclement weather conditions;
            (4) the modes of transportation, if any, that are available 
        to voters to use to reach the polling places;
            (5) the existence of and access to public transportation to 
        the polling places; and
            (6) any other factor relevant to effectuating the purposes 
        of this Act.
    (c) Obligations of the Indian Tribe.--
            (1) In general.--The State and political subdivision 
        obligations under subsection (a)(2) shall apply with respect to 
        an Indian Tribe only if that Indian Tribe files a standing 
        request with the officer designated under subsection (a)(1) for 
        a polling place or polling places for future elections, 
        pursuant to subsection (a)(2)(A), or subsection (a)(2)(B) (if 
        applicable), which--
                    (A) specifies the number and locations of such 
                polling places that the Indian Tribe is requesting;
                    (B) certifies that the Indian Tribe has arranged 
                access to the facilities in which such polling places 
                will be located, and that such access is in accordance 
                with Federal and State law;
                    (C) certifies that the Indian Tribe will ensure 
                that each such polling place will be open and available 
                to all eligible voters who reside in the precinct or 
                other geographic area assigned to such polling place, 
                regardless of whether such eligible voters are members 
                of the Indian Tribe or of any other Indian Tribe; and
                    (D) requests that the State shall designate 
                election officials and poll workers to staff such 
                polling places, or certifies that the Indian Tribe will 
                designate election officials and poll workers to staff 
                such polling places on every day that the polling 
                places will be open.
            (2) Opt out.--At any time that is 60 days or more before 
        the date of an election, an Indian Tribe that previously has 
        satisfied the obligations of paragraph (1) may notify the State 
        that the Indian Tribe intends to opt out of the standing 
        request for one or more polling places that were requested in 
        accordance with subsection (a)(2)(A) or subsection (a)(2)(B) 
        for a particular election or for all future elections.
    (d) Federal Polling Sites.--At an Indian Tribe's request, each 
State shall designate as voter polling facilities any of the facilities 
identified in accordance with section 7(a)(2) (C) or (D) of the 
National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (52 U.S.C. 20506(a)(2)), at no 
cost to the Indian Tribe, provided that the facility meets the 
requirements of Federal and State law as applied to other polling 
places within the State or political subdivision. The applicable agency 
of the Federal Government shall ensure that such designated facilities 
are made available as polling places.
    (e) Mail-In Balloting.--In States or political subdivisions that 
permit absentee or mail-in balloting, the following shall apply with 
respect to an election for Federal office:
            (1) All postage shall be prepaid by the Federal Government 
        and each ballot postmarked the day the ballot is received at a 
        postal facility located on Indian lands.
            (2) An Indian Tribe may designate a Tribal Government 
        building as a ballot pickup and collection location at no cost 
        to the Indian Tribe. The applicable State or political 
        subdivision shall collect ballots from that location.
            (3) The State or political subdivision shall provide mail-
        in and absentee ballots to each registered voter residing on 
        Indian lands in the State or political subdivision without 
        requiring a residential address, a mail-in or absentee ballot 
        request, or an excuse for a mail-in or absentee ballot.
            (4) The address of a designated Tribal Government building 
        that is a ballot pickup and collection location under paragraph 
        (2) may serve as the address and mailing address for voters 
        living on Indian lands if the designated Tribal Government 
        building is in the same precinct as that voter. If such 
        designated Tribal Government building is not in the same 
        precinct as the voter, the voter may use the designated Tribal 
        Government building as a mailing address and may separately 
        designate the voter's appropriate precinct through a 
        description of the voter's address, as specified in section 
        9428.4(a)(2) of title 11, Code of Federal Regulations.
            (5) In the case of a State or political subdivision that is 
        a covered State or political subdivision under section 203 of 
        the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. 10503), that State or 
        political subdivision shall provide absentee or mail-in voting 
        materials in the language of the applicable minority group as 
        well as in the English language, bilingual election voting 
        assistance, and written translations of all voting materials in 
        the language of the applicable minority group, as required by 
        section 203 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. 10503), 
        as amended by this Act.
    (f) Early Voting.--In a State or political subdivision that 
provides for early voting, that State or political subdivision shall 
provide not less than one early voting location on Indian lands, upon 
the request of the applicable Indian Tribe and at a site selected by 
the applicable Indian Tribe.
    (g) Enforcement.--
            (1) Attorney general.--The Attorney General may bring a 
        civil action in an appropriate district court for such 
        declaratory or injunctive relief as is necessary to carry out 
        this section.
            (2) Private right of action.--
                    (A) A person or Tribal Government who is aggrieved 
                by a violation of this section may provide written 
                notice of the violation to the chief election official 
                of the State involved.
                    (B) An aggrieved person or Tribal Government may 
                bring a civil action in an appropriate district court 
                for declaratory or injunctive relief with respect to a 
                violation of this section, if--
                            (i) that person or Tribal Government 
                        provides the notice described in subparagraph 
                        (A); and
                            (ii)(I) in the case of a violation that 
                        occurs more than 120 days before the date of an 
                        election for Federal office, the violation 
                        remains and 90 days or more have passed since 
                        the date on which the chief election official 
                        of the State receives the notice under 
                        subparagraph (A); or
                            (II) in the case of a violation that occurs 
                        120 days or less before the date of an election 
                        for Federal office, the violation remains and 
                        20 days or more have passed since the date on 
                        which the chief election official of the State 
                        receives the notice under subparagraph (A).
                    (C) In the case of a violation of this section that 
                occurs 30 days or less before the date of an election 
                for Federal office, an aggrieved person or Tribal 
                Government may bring a civil action in an appropriate 
                district court for declaratory or injunctive relief 
                with respect to the violation without providing notice 
                to the chief election official of the State under 
                subparagraph (A).
            (3) Rule of construction.--Nothing in this section shall be 
        construed to prevent a State or political subdivision from 
        providing additional polling places on Indian lands if no 
        request was made by an Indian Tribe under this section.

SEC. 7. TRIBAL PRECLEARANCE.

    (a) Actions Requiring Preclearance.--No State or political 
subdivision may carry out any of the following activities unless the 
requirements of subsection (b) have been met:
            (1) Eliminating the only polling place or voter 
        registration site on the Indian lands of an Indian Tribe.
            (2) Moving or consolidating a polling place or voter 
        registration site on the Indian lands of an Indian Tribe to a 
        location 1 mile or further from the existing location of the 
        polling place or voter registration site.
            (3) Moving or consolidating a polling place on the Indian 
        lands of an Indian Tribe to a location across a river, lake, 
        mountain, or other natural boundary such that it makes travel 
        difficult for a voter, regardless of distance.
            (4) Eliminating in-person voting on the Indian lands of an 
        Indian Tribe by designating an Indian reservation as a 
        permanent absentee voting location, unless--
                    (A) the entire State is or becomes a permanent 
                absentee voting State; or
                    (B) the Indian Tribe requests such a designation.
            (5) Removing an early voting location or otherwise 
        diminishing early voting opportunities on Indian lands.
            (6) Decreasing the number of days or hours that an in-
        person or early voting location is open on the Indian lands of 
        an Indian Tribe or changing the dates of in-person or early 
        voting on the Indian lands of an Indian Tribe.
    (b) Preclearance.--
            (1) In general.--The requirements of this subsection have 
        been met if--
                    (A) the impacted Tribal Government submits to the 
                Attorney General the Tribal Government's written 
                consent to the proposed activity described in 
                subsection (a);
                    (B) the State or political subdivision institutes 
                an action in the United States District Court for the 
                District of Columbia for a declaratory judgment, and a 
                declaratory judgment is issued, establishing that the 
                specified activity described in subsection (a) that the 
                State or political subdivision desires to carry out 
                neither has the purpose nor will have the effect of 
                denying or abridging the right to vote on account of 
                race or color, or membership in a language minority 
                group; or
                    (C) the chief legal officer or other appropriate 
                official of such State or political subdivision submits 
                a request to carry out the specified activity described 
                in subsection (a) to the Attorney General and the 
                Attorney General has not interposed an objection within 
                60 days after such submission, or upon good cause 
                shown, to facilitate an expedited approval within 60 
                days after such submission, the Attorney General has 
                affirmatively indicated that such objection will not be 
                made.
            (2) No limitation on future actions.--Neither an 
        affirmative indication by the Attorney General that no 
        objection will be made, nor the Attorney General's failure to 
        object, nor a declaratory judgment entered under this section, 
        nor a written consent issued under paragraph (1)(A) shall bar a 
        subsequent action to enjoin enforcement of an activity 
        described in subsection (a). In the event the Attorney General 
        affirmatively indicates that no objection will be made within 
        the 60-day period following receipt of a submission, the 
        Attorney General may reserve the right to reexamine the 
        submission if additional information comes to the Attorney 
        General's attention during the remainder of the 60-day period 
        which would otherwise require objection in accordance with this 
        section. Any action under this section shall be heard and 
        determined by a court of 3 judges in accordance with the 
        provisions of section 2284 of title 28 of the United States 
        Code and any appeal shall lie to the Supreme Court.

SEC. 8. TRIBAL VOTER IDENTIFICATION.

    (a) Tribal Government Identification.--If a State or political 
subdivision requires an individual to present identification for the 
purposes of voting or registering to vote in an election for Federal 
office, an identification card issued by a federally recognized Tribal 
Government, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Indian Health Service, or 
any other Tribal or Federal agency issuing identification cards to 
Indian voters shall be treated as a valid form of identification for 
such purposes.
    (b) Validity of Tribal Identification Card.--An individual shall 
not be required to show that a Tribal identification card includes a 
residential address or an expiration date in order for such Tribal 
identification card to be considered valid for purposes of voting or 
registering to vote. The voter may instead separately designate the 
voter's appropriate voting precinct through a description of the 
voter's address that conforms with the regulations for national mail 
voter registration forms, as established under section 9428.4(a)(2) of 
title 11, Code of Federal Regulations.
    (c) Online Registration.--If a State or political subdivision 
requires an identification card for an individual to register to vote 
online or to vote online, that State or political subdivision shall 
consider an identification card as described in subsection (a) to be a 
valid form of identification for the purpose of registering to vote 
online or voting online.

SEC. 9. BILINGUAL ELECTION REQUIREMENTS.

    Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. 10503) is 
amended--
            (1) in subsection (b)(3)(C), by striking ``1990'' and 
        inserting ``2010''; and
            (2) by striking subsection (c) and inserting the following:
    ``(c) Provision of Voting Materials in the Language of a Minority 
Group.--
            ``(1) In general.--Whenever any State or political 
        subdivision subject to the prohibition of subsection (b) of 
        this section provides any registration or voting notices, 
        forms, instructions, assistance, or other materials or 
        information relating to the electoral process, including 
        ballots, it shall provide them in the language of the 
        applicable minority group as well as in the English language.
            ``(2) Exceptions.--
                    ``(A) In general.--
                            ``(i) In the case of a minority group that 
                        is not American Indian or Alaska Native and the 
                        language of that minority group is oral or 
                        unwritten, the State or political subdivision 
                        shall only be required to furnish, in the 
                        covered language, oral instructions, 
                        assistance, translation of voting materials, or 
                        other information relating to registration and 
                        voting.
                            ``(ii) In the case of a minority group that 
                        is American Indian or Alaska Native, the State 
                        or political subdivision shall only be required 
                        to furnish in the covered language oral 
                        instructions, assistance, or other information 
                        relating to registration and voting, including 
                        all voting materials, if the Tribal Government 
                        of that minority group has certified that the 
                        language of the applicable American Indian or 
                        Alaska Native language is presently unwritten 
                        or the Tribal Government does not want written 
                        translations in the minority language.
            ``(3) Written translations for election workers.--
        Notwithstanding paragraph (2), the State or political division 
        may be required to provide written translations of voting 
        materials, with the consent of any applicable Indian Tribe, to 
        election workers to ensure that the translations from English 
        to the language of a minority group are complete, accurate, and 
        uniform.''.

SEC. 10. FEDERAL OBSERVERS TO PROTECT TRIBAL VOTING RIGHTS.

    (a) Amendment to the Voting Rights Act of 1965.--Section 8(a) of 
the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. 10305(a)) is amended--
            (1) in paragraph (1), by striking ``or'' after the 
        semicolon;
            (2) in paragraph (2)(B), by adding ``or'' after the 
        semicolon; and
            (3) by inserting after paragraph (2) the following:
            ``(3) the Attorney General has received a written complaint 
        from an Indian Tribe that efforts to deny or abridge the right 
        to vote under the color of law on account of race or color, or 
        in contravention of the guarantees set forth in section 
        4(f)(2), are likely to occur;''.
    (b) Publicly Available Reports.--The Attorney General shall make 
publicly available the reports of a Federal election observer appointed 
pursuant to section (8)(a)(3) of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (52 
U.S.C. 10305(a)(3)), as added by subsection (a), not later than 6 
months after the date that such reports are submitted to the Attorney 
General, except that any personally identifiable information relating 
to a voter or the substance of the voter's ballot shall not be made 
public.

SEC. 11. TRIBAL VOTING CONSULTATION.

    The Attorney General shall consult annually with Indian Tribes 
regarding issues related to voting in elections for Federal office.

SEC. 12. ATTORNEYS' FEES, EXPERT FEES, LITIGATION EXPENSES.

    In a civil action under this Act, the court shall award the 
prevailing party, other than the United States, reasonable attorney 
fees, including litigation expenses, reasonable expert fees, and costs.

SEC. 13. SEVERABILITY; RELATIONSHIP TO OTHER LAWS.

    (a) Severability.--If any provision of this Act, or the application 
of such a provision to any person, entity, or circumstance, is held to 
be invalid, the remaining provisions of this Act and the application of 
all provisions of this Act to any other person, entity, or circumstance 
shall not be affected by the invalidity.
    (b) Relationship to Other Laws.--Nothing in this Act shall 
invalidate, or limit the rights, remedies, or procedures available 
under, or supersede, restrict, or limit the application of, the Voting 
Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. 10301 et seq.), the National Voter 
Registration Act of 1993 (52 U.S.C. 20501 et seq.), the Help America 
Vote Act of 2002 (52 U.S.C. 20901 et seq.), or any other Federal law or 
regulation related to voting or the electoral process.

SEC. 14. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

    There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be 
necessary to carry out this Act.
                                 <all>