Is the Federal Government trying to preempt our States from verifying state residency and national citizenship of potential voters prior to the 2012 election? If so, would that allow unscrupulous community organizers to scour selected neighborhoods and sign up potential applicants at four dollars per head?
Our Constitution specifies that all citizens 18-yrs old or above are allowed to vote in national elections, except possibly for citizens having been involved in criminal activity. Election conduct and details are left to the States. Details include if and how verification of state residency and/or national citizenship will take place and whether additional people might also vote. Also specifically, a State cannot discriminate based on race, color, or previous condition of servitude or on failure to pay any tax. [Applicable Amendments: 14th, 15th, 17th, 19th, 25th, and 26th.]
There is currently a movement to expand the right to vote to non-citizens. But during our War of Independence we fought for representation. So now it would seem inconsistent to dilute our representation by extending the vote to non-citizens. As citizens we all have an intimate concern with the affairs of our nation; we don't know the same about non-citizens. Indeed, it would seem more reasonable to go in the opposite direction and to limit the vote to taxpaying citizens.
In 1993 congress passed the National Voter Registration Act also known as the Motor Voter Act, which "required state governments to allow for registration when a qualifying voter applied for or renewed their driver's license or applied for social services." (Wikipedia) The unfortunate thing about this Act was that no proof of citizenship was required. So later when States would require proof, the Federal Government would claim a conflict and try to prevent the States from requiring proof. However, the Constitution left the authority to require proof in the hands of the State. Hence, in accordance with the 10th Amendment, it would be a violation of the Constitution for the Federal Government to restrict the States from demanding proof.
In 2008 this failure to require proof of residence and citizenship seems to have allowed unscrupulous community organizers to scour selected neighborhoods and sign up potential applicants at four dollars per head. Some illegals and non-citizens were later identified. Others were not. The situation did and does greatly facilitate the corruption of a proper voting process. In the case of a close election, it is particularly important to be able to establish that the voters who voted did so legally.
Currently, all of our States have disallowed non-citizen suffrage. Arkansas was the last state to ban non-citizen voting in 1926. But occasionally, it is still proposed.