New Voting Restrictions in America

After the 2010 election, state lawmakers nationwide started introducing hundreds of harsh measures making it harder to vote. The new laws range from strict photo ID requirements to early voting cutbacks to registration restrictions.

Overall, 23 states have new restrictions in effect since then — 10 states have more restrictive voter ID laws in place (and six states have strict photo ID requirements), seven have laws making it harder for citizens to register, six cut back on early voting days and hours, and three made it harder to restore voting rights for people with past criminal convictions.

In 2016, 14 states had new voting restrictions in place for the first time in a presidential election. Those 14 states were: Alabama, Arizona, Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin.

In 2017, legislatures in Arkansas and in North Dakota passed voter ID bills, which governors in each state signed, and Missouri implemented a restrictive law that was passed by ballot initiative in 2016. Georgia, Iowa, Indiana, and New Hampshire have also enacted more restrictions this year, in addition to laws that were on the books for previous elections.

This page details the new restrictive voting requirements put in place over the last several years.

Voting Restrictions in America

This map has been updated to reflect legislation discussed in the May 10, 2017 Voting Laws RoundupView a PDF version here.

Status Key: 

Restriction in place for first time in presidential election in 2016

Restriction in place for 2012 presidential election

States With Restrictive Laws Since the 2016 Election

More from Brennan Center: 

In 2017, changes to voting laws are again poised to play a major role in state legislative agendas.

President Trump recently revived his false claim of widespread voter fraud in the 2016 election, and called for an investigation into the issue. Elected officials, election administrators, experts, and leaders from across the political spectrum have spoken out against these untrue allegations.