U.S. judge strikes down parts of Wisconsin voter ID law: report

(Reuters) - A federal judge on Friday struck down parts of a Wisconsin law requiring voters to show a photo identification at the polls, as well as other election rules passed by the state's Republican-led legislature, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel newspaper reported.

U.S. District Judge James Peterson, ruling in a lawsuit challenging the 2011 law by two liberal groups, found sections of the law unconstitutional, the paper reported.

Peterson left the voting rules intact for an Aug 9. primary election but the decision was expected to impact the November presidential election.

Wisconsin is one of several Republican-led states that have passed such laws in recent years amid fear of fraudulent voting by illegal immigrants and others. The nine states with the strictest laws, insisting on state-issued photo identification for voters, include Georgia, Indiana, Texas and Virginia.

Republicans say voter ID laws are needed to prevent voter fraud. But Democrats say the laws are really intended to make it harder for poor African-Americans and Latinos, who tend to vote Democrat, to vote.

(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by G Crosse and James Dalgleish)