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Pennsylvania is Just the Latest Ruling Upholding Voter ID Law

Courts have ruled a number of times on the controversial laws, often in support of them.

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On Wednesday, in a closely watched case, a state judge in Pennsylvania declined to block the state’s controversial voter ID law from taking effect. If the ruling is upheld on appeal, registered voters in the state will be required to show acceptable photo ID during the general election in November.

There’s been a lot of attention on this lawsuit, given the closeness of the election and greater focus on voter ID laws, which critics say could disenfranchise voters who are likely to lack photo ID, often the poor, elderly, and minorities. (To catch up on this issue, check out our guide on everything you need to know about voter ID laws.)

Yesterday’s ruling has generated plenty of criticism and concern. But it’s far from the first time a judge has ruled on voter ID laws, a number of times in favor of them. Indeed, the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld Indiana’s strict voter ID law, saying in 2008 that it’s constitutional.

Lawsuits have continued to crop up challenging the laws, mostly on the grounds that they violate state constitutions. Meanwhile, Republican-led state legislatures are continuing to pass the laws.

To get a real sense of where things may be going, it’s helpful to look at the past. Here’s a rundown of state court decisions on voter ID laws:

Three rulings in favor of voter ID laws

  • In July 2007, in an advisory opinion sought by the state House of Representatives, the Michigan Supreme Court concluded that the state’s photo ID requirement was a “reasonable, nondiscriminatory restriction designed to preserve the purity of elections and to prevent abuses of the electoral franchise.” The court said there was no need for the legislature to prove voter fraud existed before taking “prophylactic action.” As part of the ruling, the court said the photo ID restrictions were not overly harsh. The opinion included two dissents.
  • In June 2010, the Indiana Supreme Court sided with a lower court judge in dismissing a motion to toss out the state’s voter ID law. The court ruled that the law is a valid “election regulation” and held the burdens were not “sufficiently unreasonable.” In addition, the court frequently referenced the 2008 U.S. Supreme Court decision, which upheld Indiana’s voter ID law on federal constitutional grounds. The state Supreme Court’s decision included one dissent.
  • In March 2011, the Georgia Supreme Court affirmed a lower court’s ruling upholding the state’s voter ID law. It found the state’s photo ID requirement was a “minimal, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory restriction” and repeatedly cited the U.S. Supreme Court decision as persuasive authority. It also rejected the argument that Georgia’s Constitution afforded greater voting protections than the federal Constitution, arguing it was “coextensive” and that “we apply them as one.” There was one dissent.

Rulings against voter ID laws

  • In October 2006, the Missouri Supreme Court upheld a lower court’s decision striking down the state’s voter ID law for violating the state constitution. The court ruled that there was no compelling state interest to justify the burdens posed by the law. It pointed to the lack of any reported instances of voter impersonation fraud in the state and to the fact that the law was not tailored to prevent other types of voter fraud aside from impersonation. There was one dissenting vote.

    Missouri passed a photo ID law again in 2011, but it was vetoed by Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon. Earlier this year, a ballot proposal to amend the state Constitution for a photo ID requirement was rejected by a state judge and not revised before the legislature recessed.

  • In March 2012, the first of two state judges in Wisconsin to rule on the law barred enforcement of the law. The judge warned of possible disenfranchisement of voters that could include “those struggling souls who, unlike the vast majority of Wisconsin voters, for whatever reason will lack the financial, physical, mental, or emotional resources” to comply with the law.

    In July, a separate state judge similarly blocked the law. The judge cited the time and cost of obtaining photo ID and the strong voting protections extended by the Wisconsin Constitution.

    Although the Wisconsin Attorney General filed an appeal of these two decisions to the state Supreme Court, it’s not likely the appeals will be considered before the November election.

  • In Wednesday’s ruling out of Pennsylvania, Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson referenced many of these past court rulings, particularly the ones that upheld voter ID laws. He also stressed the need for deference to the Pennsylvania legislature. Criticism of Pennsylvania’s law had intensified after the Republican majority leader of the state’s House had been quoted saying the voter ID law would benefit Republicans. Although the judge called the remark “disturbing,” he wrote that it didn’t change his reasoning.

    Pennsylvania’s photo ID requirement, the judge concluded, “is a reasonable, non-discriminatory, non-severe burden when viewed in the broader context of the widespread use of photo ID in daily life.”

    That doesn’t end things for Pennsylvania. The Justice Department has launched its own investigation into some states’ voter ID laws, including Pennsylvania’s.

As I think I’ve said before, I don’t have a problem with Voter ID laws in general.  I think fraud could easily be a problem, especially in sensitive districts.  However, there are two huge caveats:

1.  The law needs to be sensible.  Either spend the money to make sure that every eligible voter can get an ID, even at the polling station, or use a point system that includes endorsement, so that a marginalized person can quickly “build a case,” rather than waiting for processing.  It’s 2012, and we can do a lot better than a driver’s license, after all, for not much cost.

2.  If we need to be accountable to the people counting the votes, then counting the votes needs to be transparent to us.  Show the aggregate results every step of the way, so that fraud can be seen by everybody, whether it’s from dead voters voting (twice as many people vote as live in the district) or fudging the counts.  This should be very cheap, since it’s just posting numbers that clearly already exist.

The way I look at it, if an area can cover both those bases, requiring an ID is perfectly sensible and any politician fighting it is probably relying on undocumented people for support.  If they overlook the first balance, they’re relying on marginalizing the undocumented.  If they overlook the second, then we have no way to authenticate the results, so it really doesn’t matter if they authenticate the voters, either.

COMMON SENSE dictates the IMPORTANCE of a voter proving their identity prior to receiving a ballot for the sake of America’s security and future!  ~ As it is so common in many instances where photo ID’s are required to conduct normal business transactions in our country, for a person to NOT make an effort to obtain such ID is ludicrous and reason enough to have their voter privilege suspended until proper ID is acquired! 
Bottom Line: To put an entire nation in jeopardy in order to accommodate a minority of laggards is the epitome of stupidity…..or purposeful FRAUD!

“A minority of laggards.”  Yeah, like old people, the largest group this cuts out.  They might not support being thrown under the financial bus, so call them laggards and bar them from the polls.  We’ve wrung all we can from them during their productive years.  They can go to hell now, and the sooner, the better.

This is Voter Suppression at its finest.

Watch the video and sign the petition to end Voter Suppression.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9TjVsQa57c

When I was growing up, I remember the saying, “it is better to let 100 guilty men go free than to execute 1 innocent man.”  Justice was important.  Now we get to the voting thing.  If there is fraud, prosecute the frauders.  But if we are looking at some concept that just might take the right to vote from any segment of our population, that effort should fail of its own weight.  And just because some business says I must jump through some hoops to do business with them (and I might choose to not do business with them on that basis) the Constitution with its amendments only requires that I be a citizen who is at least 18 years old.
So quit playing games with the so-called fraud.  Prove it and prosecute.

Here’s a scenario: a 75 year old man goes into the DMV to renew his driver’s license he’s had for fifty-odd years and doesn’t get his license renewed. He suddenly has no picture ID. He’s not informed he should get a state I.D. which he’s never gotten before and maybe doesn’t even know where to get one. Meanwhile, his state passed a ruling that he can’t vote without one, but didn’t know that would affect him, since he’s had his driver’s license for fifty years, and forgets about that. He scrambles on Election Day after being told he can’t vote to get his birth certificate, SS card and something for proof of address in order to get an ID to vote, and doesn’t get to vote for the first time in his life since turning 18. Imagine thousands of senior citizens who suffer this humiliation and then they hear a Republican majority leader’s quote from Pennsylvania, and they all vote Democratic from now on. Hopefully the tide shifting won’t leave people hanging on Election Day in these states. Let’s hope the DOJ gets this reversed, and quickly.

I think arbitrarily targeting and removing people from the voting roles is fraud in and of itself. Follow the money.

Most of the voter fraud I have heard about, the officials were the ones commiting the fraud. I think this is just a attempt to take the citizens rights away. There should be NO charge forpicture ID, OR for the documentation to get that picture ID, the whole process should be free. or it is discriminatory.

nick petitter

Aug. 16, 2012, 5:33 p.m.

I don’t understand this ID concern, this day and age we’re always asked for an ID, what is so different about presenting an ID to vote ?
one of the most honored things to do and some have a problem with that? why would any American want someone who is not a citizen of this country to vote for candidate to hold public office. Would the chinese want my vote to count in China ?

I confess:  The most virulent example of someone displaying pride in their success at stripping fellow citizens of their rights that didn’t come with the sound of gunfire came from within my own home state:

http://videocafe.crooksandliars.com/karoli/shameless-republican-brags-about-voter-id-w

I was shocked…many people talk about “political correctness” restraining Americans, but egad - your conscience alone should suffice to restrain what you say in some situations!

And when it doesn’t...if you know as much history as I do and have lived in as many poor countries as I have and have seen as many undemocratic governments in action as I did…when they stop being afraid of the reaction to a blatant display of totalitarianism, the question isn’t “What will they do next?”; it is “Who is next?”

It’s the kind of signal, in fact, that should make you ensure your passport is in order, you have the proper visas and/or work permits for more democratic nations, and you have a method for transferring funds to at least one other country sufficient to cover living expenses for at least two years.

Two years, for in America that is a quick as the election cycle will permit people to get over their shock and start voting with their hearts and minds again instead of their wallets and, too often, the base instincts that lead them to derive pleasure from seeing others oppressed. 

Two years, assuming that elections actually take place again - for when would-be totalitarians decide they have “enough” power to move, they do move…with the speed of flipping a light switch.

Two years, assuming those elections - and the ballot counting - are honest.

Two years, assuming that those elections are not overturned through the simple expediency of resorting to a friendly Supreme “Court”.

Two years, assuming that you are not yourself “next”....there have be tens of millions of human beings who mistakenly assumed that they wouldn’t - couldn’t - be “next”.

If you think I overly dramatize or am resorting to hyperbole, then you had better be able to flatly rule out every single possibility I describe - and when it comes to our Supreme “Court”, I would remind you of Florida and, later, Citizens United.

Think hard about this next election - and even harder if the right attains more power.  Especially if you have a family…especially if you have made a name for yourself by expressing outrage over the actions of the right.

I confess:  The most virulent example of someone displaying pride in their success at stripping fellow citizens of their rights that didn’t come with the sound of gunfire came from within my own home state:

videocafe.crooksandliars.com/karoli/shameless-republican-brags-about-voter-id-w

I was shocked…many people talk about “political correctness” restraining Americans, but egad - your conscience alone should suffice to restrain what you say in some situations!

And when it doesn’t...if you know as much history as I do and have lived in as many poor countries as I have and have seen as many undemocratic governments in action as I did…when they stop being afraid of the reaction to a blatant display of totalitarianism, the question isn’t “What will they do next?”; it is “Who is next?”

It’s the kind of signal, in fact, that should make you ensure your passport is in order, you have the proper visas and/or work permits for more democratic nations, and you have a method for transferring funds to at least one other country sufficient to cover living expenses for at least two years.

Two years, for in America that is a quick as the election cycle will permit people to get over their shock and start voting with their hearts and minds again instead of their wallets and, too often, the base instincts that lead them to derive pleasure from seeing others oppressed. 

Two years, assuming that elections actually take place again - for when would-be totalitarians decide they have “enough” power to move, they do move…with the speed of flipping a light switch.

Two years, assuming those elections - and the ballot counting - are honest.

Two years, assuming that those elections are not overturned through the simple expediency of resorting to a friendly Supreme “Court”.

Two years, assuming that you are not yourself “next”....there have be tens of millions of human beings who mistakenly assumed that they wouldn’t - couldn’t - be “next”.

If you think I overly dramatize or am resorting to hyperbole, then you had better be able to flatly rule out every single possibility I describe - and when it comes to our Supreme “Court”, I would remind you of Florida and, later, Citizens United.

Think hard about this next election - and even harder if the right attains more power.  Especially if you have a family…especially if you have made a name for yourself by expressing outrage over the actions of the right.

freeandequalpa

Aug. 16, 2012, 8:35 p.m.

For anyone interested, here is a detailed summary of the Pennsylvania decision:

http://freeandequalpa.wordpress.com/2012/08/15/petitioners-request-to-enjoin-enforcement-of-photo-id-law-denied/

How sad. Here in Australia it is compulsory to vote, or at least attend the polling station and have one’s name marked off the electoral roll. No I.D. is required, yet voter fraud is not a problem. In over 100 years there has never been a case where it was shown, or even suggested, that fraud played any part in the outcome in any electorate at local, state or federal level.
In the event that a prospective voter has any issues with being able to vote on the day, such as if their name does not appear on the roll, a “provisional vote” is cast. The marked ballot paper is placed in an unmarked envelope which is in turn placed inside an envelope marked with the name of the provisional voter. If the bona fides of the prospective voter are confirmed by the Electoral Commission then the vote is accepted and can be counted anonymously.
I find it very disappointing that the basic freedom in any democracy, the right to vote, can so easily stripped from some citizens, as appears to be the case in several of your states. I find it very dangerous for the rest of the world if your democratic freedoms can so easily be subverted for the benefit of the few.

Edmund Singleton

Aug. 17, 2012, 3:42 a.m.

What no poll tax? Maybe next election…

Re: “No Ticket - No Laundry!” Voting Requirements

Regarding citizens’ new voting-related requirements like I stated earlier, is the ‘sticking point’ - I totally agree with the politicians’ favoring this and their premise: that it is a fact that many, many poor, minority and senior citizens do not have; and therefore cannot produce even a basic photo ID.

Most favor ID for voting, of course - that’s obvious. However, at the same time - filling out and signing a voting ballot with a valid address and the forms that locality sent to your home; is a most definitely a basic right that these governments owe to their citizens.

By the same token, someone shouldn’t have to fork over a picture ID for the same municipalities to some elected autocratic dictatorial official; in order for the firefighters from that area to plug in and then turn on the hoses and put out the fire because you do not have valid and up-to-date home insurance photo ID.

Or to pick up grandma when she keels over - just because a particular political party believes it is inconvenient or that you may not have your valid, paid-up and current health insurance card and a photo ID. That’s obvious. Most people would like everyone to have a valid insurance card. Making it the REQUIREMENT is that sticking point.

Nobody is currently disputing that they NEED and ID for a more convenient life in our modern society. These affected people are nearly all; likely not showing their ID because they most often do not HAVE one available - not because of ‘the refusal to offer’ one - as is now being ‘required’ in more and more places.

Additionally, not having the ability to have/carry any basic valid ID on you AT ALL can have other unintended (even dire) consequences as well. In our neighborhood an elderly man passed out in the street one time a while back and someone saw him and called an ambulance.

He wasn’t from that area and evidently had absolutely nothing inside his wallet that identified exactly who he was or where he was from or most importantly in this case, who to contact in an emergency.

Unfortunately, hospitals can actually do precious little for someone who finds themselves in this precarious type of situation - without being able to ascertain past medical information or the even knowing the persons name. In this case, the local TV station covered this and luckily his children came forward and were able to find him, thank goodness

Not having an ID can severely jeopardize a person’s ability to do many of these things - not to mention not being able to cast a ballot in states that require a citizen produce one beforehand. Therefore I think it would also be more prudent to place more of the emphasis on offering more assistance to these fine folks; as well as addressing their voting requirements.

Additionally, I entirely agree that these laws are being enacted by those who have absolutely no concern whatsoever as to why the people have no ID at all… and that they are being entirely disingenuous, regarding the ‘proven to be fantasy’ claims of even the remote possibility these laughable proclamations regarding any rampant ‘multiple voter’ fraud.

If these affected citizens were potential voters were right-leaning voters, the Republicans would be sending interns as volunteers in stretch-limo bus service to their homes and offering to assist in pulling the voting levers for them. (lol)

For all of you who support the Voter ID laws, should also be consistent and support gun registration in this country. You can use the same logical argument for both cases. Unless, this is just a “hot” button issue to stir up irrational emotions. Put this in perspective, Voter ID laws that cost millions of dollars enact, maintain, an enforce that fundamentally has only been in response to very few fraud cases over the years. While the sales of guns that criminals can easily get their hands on are done without the same level of scrutiny.

Re: “No Ticket - No Laundry!” Voting Requirements

Regarding citizens’ new voting-related requirements like I stated earlier, is the ‘sticking point’ - I totally agree with the politicians’ favoring this and their premise: that it is a fact that many, many poor, minority and senior citizens do not have; and therefore cannot produce even a basic photo ID.

Most favor ID for voting, of course - that’s obvious. However, at the same time - filling out and signing a voting ballot with a valid address and the forms that locality sent to your home; is a most definitely a basic right that these governments owe to their citizens.

By the same token, someone shouldn’t have to fork over a picture ID for the same municipalities to some elected autocratic dictatorial official; in order for the firefighters from that area to plug in and then turn on the hoses and put out the fire because you do not have valid and up-to-date home insurance photo ID.

Or to pick up grandma when she keels over - just because a particular political party believes it is inconvenient or that you may not have your valid, paid-up and current health insurance card and a photo ID. That’s obvious. Most people would like everyone to have a valid insurance card. Making it the REQUIREMENT for service is unjust.

Nobody is currently disputing that they NEED and ID for a more convenient life in our modern society. These affected people are nearly all; likely not showing their ID because they most often do not HAVE one available - not because of ‘the refusal to offer’ one - as is now being ‘required’ in more and more places.

Additionally, not having the ability to have/carry any basic valid ID on you AT ALL can have other unintended (even dire) consequences as well. In our neighborhood an elderly man passed out in the street one time a while back and someone saw him and called an ambulance.

He wasn’t from that area and evidently had absolutely nothing inside his wallet that identified exactly who he was or where he was from or most importantly in this case, who to contact in an emergency.

Unfortunately, hospitals can actually do precious little for someone who finds themselves in this precarious type of situation - without being able to ascertain past medical information or the even knowing the persons name. In this case, the local TV station covered this and luckily his children came forward and were able to find him, thank goodness

If these affected citizens were potential voters were right-leaning voters, the Republicans would be sending interns as volunteers in stretch-limo bus service to their homes and offering to assist in pulling the voting levers for them. (lol)

We should also offer their parents more assistance in obtaining ID. It is an undisputable it fact that many, many poor, minorities (and also ‘senior’ not-yet-citizens) do not have; and therefore cannot produce even a basic photo IDs for Non-Citizens.

I believe that - as a society - we are we should also be very concerned about as well as possibly come to offer some more assistance to just about ‘anyone’ out there who does not actually have either the knowledge, financial means or the wherewithal to be able to apply for, keep and carry around a basic photo ID in the first place.

One cannot even accomplish even very basic undertakings in our modern society; such as enter a bank and open an account or cash a check, register your children for school, apply for needed senior-related financial and medical government benefits and literally dozens of other basic things in the modern world without being able to produce a current (as well a legitimate) photo ID.

Not having an ID can severely jeopardize a person’s ability to do many of these things - not to mention not being able to cast a ballot in states that require a citizen produce one beforehand. Therefore I think it would also be more prudent to place more of the emphasis on offering more assistance to these fine folks; as well as addressing their voting requirements.

Additionally, I entirely agree that these laws are being enacted by those who have absolutely no concern whatsoever as to why the people have no ID at all… and that they are being entirely disingenuous, regarding the ‘proven to be fantasy’ claims of even the remote possibility these laughable proclamations regarding any rampant ‘multiple voter’ fraud.

Making it the REQUIREMENT is that sticking point - these laws are being enacted by those who don’t care as to WHY the people have no ID at all; but only because those affected by the law do not vote for their party.

My 90 year old mother has no car, doesn’t drive and has no photo ID. She has voted in every election since she was eligible. Forcing her and others like her to get a photo ID just to vote is un-American. After having survived the Great Depression, WW II, raising three kids while working a full time job, paying taxes, and supporting this country, she’s being thrown under the bus by slimy politicians whose sole purpose in life seems to be to insure their regressive party’s election. Shame on them and anyone else who supports this nonsense.

Voters are already tracked—by the registrars. When you move into a new place, you register to vote there (and you go on the voter roles at your new address). Someone moves into your OLD place—and they register to vote <guess where?>.... Realistically, we need a National ID card—issued free once every ten years. It would save a lot of time and money (for business and govt) and take a lot of duplicated plastic out of many wallets.

Bob, not that I want to derail this conversation too far off-topic, but there are two major flaws in your analogy.

The first is that Voter ID laws are about usage, not status.  I’m sure nobody would be against a law demanding that you show your ID before murdering somebody, but I can’t imagine that actually ever happening.  Murderers seem likely to blow off paperwork and formalities like that.

The second is that—scanning the Constitution to double-check—the two aren’t the same from a legal perspective, at all.  As far as I can tell, voting isn’t a Constitutional concept, at least not for we mere mortals.  The Constitution and the amendments define the electoral college as voters for President and discuss Congress voting on laws.  There’s also a shopping list of individual reasons for which we can’t be denied our votes (whenever we vote).  However, the Constitution seems strangely silent on what we may vote for.  By contrast, the Bill of Rights says outright, “the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed,” to protect freedom and democracy and whatnot.

In other words, strictly speaking, your right to vote can be Constitutionally infringed, as long as it’s not on the basis of race, gender, servitude, age beyond majority, or paying a poll tax.  That’s not nearly as true for guns.  So, it’s actually not consistent at all to support Voter ID and reject gun control.

Mind you, that’s just a reading of the Constitution, not my personal feelings toward guns.  I’m against gun control because I do believe that it’s opposed to a free and democratic state (not to sound creepy, but you can’t deter or stop abusive government forces by smugly invoking your civil liberties), but I also hate guns and hope I never need to deal with one.

That said, I think I’d accept a gun registration law comparable to what I outline above:  If the government makes it trivial to get registered and ponies up the equivalent information for its people, that seems like a fair tradeoff.  But again, keep in mind that murderers still won’t do it, so you’re only harassing law-abiding citizens rather than stopping crime.  Demanding transparency demands transparency, tit for tat.

(Another approach would be to make people responsible for their guns AND their votes.  If someone uses your gun in a crime/shoots someone by accident or uses your identity to vote, charging you as an accessory to the crime would certainly incentivize you to be vigilant.  You might say that’s blaming the victim, and I can obviously see that, but if you don’t know your gun is stolen or can’t be bothered to report it missing, maybe you’re not a very good victim.  And for voting, checking in with the polling station to mention you’re not showing up is very low-impact and could trigger an ID check if “you” show up after saying you wouldn’t.)

Cleanup Philly

Aug. 17, 2012, 11:01 a.m.

After all of the abuses by ACORN, especially in Philly, 2008, and the City Commissioner’s report by Al Schmidt, no one can honestly say voter ID is not necessary in PA.

This is a good law. The ID from PennDOT is free upon request. Many types of photo ID can be used to vote.

The lead ACLU plaintiff in PA JUST GOT her photo ID after everyone swore she would never be able to vote again.

Most of the arguments against the law are full of false assumptions are errors, such as the claim that 100 guilty men should go free so one innocent man can also refer to criminal matters. Applying that to voting would make a accurate, valid voting statistically meaningless.

The hysteria against this law common sense law must end. IDs are a ubiquitous, unavoidable part of modern life. You help people by helping them get a photo ID. You hurt them by giving them reasons to avoid it.

Why are the Dems so committed to out of date, non modern voting? Why do we have to drag the Democrats kicking and screaming into the 21st century?

Curiouser and curiouser.

Cleanup Philly

Aug. 17, 2012, 11:06 a.m.

It’s a shame it took conservatives to get this done because the Democrats wanted nothing to do with modernizing and improving elections.

Let that influence your vote in November. Which party will do the honest best job in a truly bipartisan fashion in PA?

Photo ID cleans up elections on both sides. It is a bipartisan reform that most ordinary registered Democrats support, just for some reason not elected Democrats in PA, especially in Philly.

This law cleans up Philly. Soon we will not have the worst “elected” body outside the third world. Who voted for those guys? Who, indeed.

Someone made a good point—ACORN—one good reason for voter verification & ID. This group has a reputation of fraud big time, they will be very active this November you could bet on that———-
Someone also said his 90 year old grandmother dosen’t have a photo ID but always votes——-get her a photo ID dumbell—

Nick Petitte: hopefully the grandmother doesn’t live in a state that actually requires her to go get her photo I.D. to vote, so don’t insult someone just because you don’t have all the facts.

Cleanup Philly: are you sure about this? I saw the video of Mike Turzai, it can’t be that easy! I would think ProPublica would put this information into the above article, even though it’s about a judge’s ruling. Either that or this is an even more recent development that PennDOT came up with. Thank goodness they did, because it’s really needed.

along with free photo i.d.s, they should be required to give free birth certificates, too! And if someone was born in another state, a check from Pennsylvania to cover the cost should be required. They make the people get them, they should bear the cost!

Clearly, this is a plot by Republicans to disenfranchise the deceased and illegal aliens. Photo ID’s aren’t hard, Reading the race-baiting lies posted here is hard.

I am all for all citizens having the opportunity to vote. The need is simple: prove you can vote. If you haven’t noticed, there is little you cannot do without an id card of some sort.Yet, it is just fine to commit fraud at the ballot box. It has been proven over and over so many times the current systems have problems have problems.

NO ID NO VOTE How simple can it be?

90 year old grand Mother worked her entire life now can’t vote.. Really why not, it is called get off your tired A and get her one. ( YEA NOT THAT EASY ) 90 and draws a social security payment, which means check to bank by law since years.. 90 and prescriptions how does she do it , it goes on and on.. SO no ID; how does she do that stuff. Get off the lies just get her one if she needs it..

Australia you do not have 20 million illegals or more we do…

AUSTRALIA, requirde by law to vote,
I reallly like this one. Would like the US to go to this one and add a finger print like third world countries do… Yea good old electronic Finger print check..  Would show voter fraud right??? Not only that it is a type of census .

Why would some one be against a benefits card for others????

Voter registration - Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaen.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voter_registrationCached - Similar
You +1’d this publicly. Undo
In Australia it is a legal offence to fail to vote (or at the very least, attend a ... by the particular station; the voter’s I.D. card (which every citizen is required to have, ...

What people should be asking is what makes the Republicans constantly assume the American people are stupid enough to continually lie to?  One example is their constant use of ACORN in their arguments…an entity involved in voter registration, not voter fraud.

How many cases of in-person voter fraud - that is, someone actually fraudulently voting - do happen, you ask?  Looks like about 10 - over every dozen years.  Out of how many hundred million votes cast?

That is what the latest study says:

http://truth-out.org/news/item/10981-new-nationwide-study-of-election-fraud-since-2000-finds-just-10-cases-of-in-person-voter-fraud

Yet the right continues to paint this as an enormous problem - and continues to implement policies that target the poor, minority, the aged - and the young, like college students.  That is, those Americans the right most wants to take from.

Like I said, what makes me maddest - and disturbs me the most - is the right always assumes the American people are too stupid to see through them as if the American people were nothing but farm animals.  If the Republicans do win, don’t be surprised if they follow up by treating the American people like farm animals…at least those Americans they don’t like (and “you know who you are” is becoming increasingly probable, isn’t it?). 

They wouldn’t be the first totalitarians who did.

This photo ID stuff…in modern America, there is only one place where the targets of those who are so far gone in their sadistic greed that they see Americans not as people but as things can defend themselves:  In the voting booth.

Photo ID is all about stripping the intended victims of their ability to vote - and so of their right and ability to defend themselves.

If the right/Republicans can stop enough of their priority targets (again, the poor, minorities, the aged, and the young) from defending themselves, that may enable them to win…and if they win, they can and so will turn their attention to their secondary targets:  Women - and anybody and everybody who can be described as “labor”.

I unhesitatingly predict - because Americans have a tendency towards a certain arrogant complacency - that Americans will fail to understand that the latter definition - “labor” - as well as the overall list of intended targets will only grow with Republican success.

That is how the right/so-called “conservatives” have behaved throughout human history - and to date America’s right is marching in lockstep with their historical antecedents.

I was rereading my last comment (a function of delayed transfer of email to me resulting in a bunch of outdated “A new comment…” notifications from ProPublica being delivered) and decided I should explain something about my linkage of the right to “sadistic greed”.

It isn’t necessarily an accurate phrase as sadism - the desire to inflict pain and suffering, or worse - upon others has nothing to do with greed directly.  Our right currently attracts most of America’s sadists simply because our right is willing to tell them who it is “OK” to look down upon, despise, and even hate.  Typically, however, sadism is repressed by the collective power of the society or that society’s government.  To express that sadism, the individual so afflicted needs (excepting those cases you read about where somebody has been locked in some sadist’s basement for a decade and so on) power.  I tend to use the phrase “sadistic greed” because power in America is a function of either personal wealth, position (as in being “the boss” of some entity), or political power.  Consequently, some pursue wealth merely to attain the power to express their sadism.

Now our right would express outrage and say that there is a vast difference between what they wish to do (i.e., use economic means - specifically, the absolute control of wealth in America - to inflict pain and suffering…do I need add that “money” is the arbiter of the length and quality of life of all individuals in a capitalistic society?) and what that basement sadist does with the cruel tools of torture.

But is there, really? 

No matter what weapon is used to inflict suffering or worse - that is, no matter how somebody artificially manipulates the length and quality of your life - is there any real difference to you?  What is the difference, really, between the abbreviation of a life with a hammer and the abbreviation of a life through continual wage repression, job offshoring, and denial of access to medical care?  Does the person who is attacked with a hammer suffer less than the person who endures the agonies of bone cancer?  (Those who have experienced - or watched someone experience - the latter know the answer to that question far too well.)

Read the right’s speeches….read their comments across the internet...listen to their politicians and their talking heads.  Do you not see speech and comment after speech and comment that fairly drip with barely repressed cruelty?  The sadism is there; what the right still lacks is the power to express that sadism…the power to change the laws and eliminate the government programs that now prevent them from making Americans suffer “legally”. 

Efforts such as voter suppression and Citizens United are intended to remedy that lack of power.

Doubt me not:  America risks much by permitting the right - the Republicans and their kin - to attain ever more power.  Sadism is like greed in that it can rarely be satiated; the appetites of those so afflicted only expand…“enough” is not in the vocabulary of their psychology.  Once those who are afflicted with greed or sadism - or, worse, both - attain power, time is all that protects the many from their lusts.

And time is…fleeting.

Sigh…even this:

“To express that sadism, the individual so afflicted needs (excepting those cases you read about where somebody has been locked in some sadist’s basement for a decade and so on) power.”

was poorly said.  In the example “exception” that I provided, the sadist seizes power directly by confining and controlling their victim directly

But to “broaden their horizons” and impact larger segments of the society, the sadist(s) must attain power in the terms of the society they are operating in; that is (in America) by attaining

“personal wealth, position (as in being “the boss” of some entity), or political power”

Our society, at least, still (barely) prohibits using religion as a means of and authority for expressing sadism.  If you don’t already know of what I speak, I would remind you of Europe’s “Inquisition”...that is, sadism with the imprimatur of religion. 

See, as one sanitized source, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inquisition

IBsteve to u

You sound sick, get help soon—

@Nick Petite - go reread your own comments…see if you can perceive what I’m talking about.

I admit to suspecting that I must be going crazy when I think I hear members of the right talk about stuff like “legitimate rape”.

ibsteve2u
Yes you are going crazy that’s why I’m suggesting you get help.
Where does a sadist locked up in someones basement have to do with
—a voter ID—you sound like a typical unbalanced far left liberal who starts saying dumb things totally irrelevent of the subject matter to get attention. Hate and anger is not a sane strategy it gets you nowhere.
And who the h—-is talking about legitimate rape in this article other then you—spitting out anger—get help.

@nick petite:  I don’t suppose that it would do any good to point out the conflict between your accusing me of being controlled by “hate and anger” and your routine use of derogatory phrases like “typical unbalanced far left liberal”?

I will leave it to other readers to judge the relevancy of the increasingly well-known phrase “legitimate rape” to my earlier comments.

It belatedly occurred to me that perhaps I was assuming (insert old saw regarding the construction of the word “assume”) too much when I assumed that it would be perfectly obvious to the reader as to why I would connect the right - to include their political arm, the Republicans - to sadistic terms like “legitimate rape”.

In the event that I was indeed being arrogant, then (in addition to my apology) here is an article that explains how the term - as sick as it is - recently surfaced in popular culture and who uses such terms as if they were valid…a short history which, unfortunately, includes the Republican the Republicans themselves named as the finest of all Republicans.

http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-doctor-behind-todd-akins-rape-theory-was-a-romney-surrogate-in-2007-20120821,0,80862.story

Note:  If you do read that article, perhaps you’ll understand why I view the Republicans with such deep misgivings if you additionally visualize the argument the defense would use in a rape trial given the concept of “legitimate rape”. 

The acceptance of the idea that a woman has a natural mechanism that prevents pregnancy in cases of “legitimate rape” is only a lawyer’s breath away from arguing that pregnancy is “proof” that the sex that lead to the pregnancy was consensual rather than rape.

I find it difficult to believe that I could anticipate that scenario but the entire right - with all of the legal advice that their vast fortunes can buy…with all of the lawyers that their vast fortunes keep on retainer - could not.

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