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Arizona GOP leaders applaud voting rights ruling

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PHOENIX (AP) - A U.S. Supreme Court decision means Arizona will not be required to seek federal approval on election changes ranging from voter district overhauls to polling place relocations.

The decision Tuesday was hailed by the state's Republican elected officials as a victory for state sovereignty.

The 5-4 ruling struck down a potent provision of the 1965 Voting Rights Act that required Arizona and eight other states to get approval from the Justice Department on election changes.

Republican Gov. Jan Brewer said the provision had improperly "trapped Arizona under the thumb of the federal government" and dismissed critics who insist the state needs federal watchdogs to protect against ongoing voter disenfranchisement.

Maricopa County NAACP president Oscar Tillman said only elected officials who want to suppress minority turnout should welcome the Supreme Court ruling.

Follow this story: Supreme Court: Arizona citizenship proof law illegal

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