Must Initiative Petitions Be Distributed in Many Different Languages?

Some federal district court decisions recently have said "yes," applying the federal Voting Rights Act and extending a Ninth Circuit decision from late last year. Lawprof Rick Hasen (generally something of a liberal) urges the Ninth Circuit to issue an emergency stay of one such decision that's currently being appealed.

Hasen sets forth his arguments in this column from last December (following the original Ninth Circuit decision). Sacramento Bee columnist Dan Weintraub seems to agree. I'm not a Voting Rights Act maven, but my sense is that Rick is probably quite right.

UPDATE: The Ninth Circuit refuses to issue the emergency stay (in a short decision by Judges Kozinski and Rymer).