The ultimate purpose of the Arizona Native Vote Election Protect Project is to protect the right to vote for Native American voters. The project started in 2008 after Native Americans were disproportionately disenfranchised by Arizona Proposition 200, Arizona’s voter identification law.
In 2006, Agnes Laughter (Navajo Nation), a dedicated voter, went to vote at her usual polling location in Chilchinbeto Chapter House but was denied the opportunity to vote because she did not have the requisite identification despite being recognized as a clan relative of the poll worker. Because Grandma Agnes was born in a traditional Navajo Hogan, had no electricity or running water in her home, and did not drive, she lacked access to a birth certificate, utility bill, drivers license, or vehicle insurance that constituted lawful identification to receive her ballot. Grandma Agnes filed a lawsuit along with the Navajo Nation to challenge the law and worked with the Indian Legal Clinic to obtain a delayed birth certificate and state-issued identification so that she would not be denied her right to vote for lack of identification in the future.