The battleground for the 2012 elections is spreading beyond swing states and running mates and into the wallets and handbags of voters, who’d better be carrying some ID in there if they want to cast their ballots. The National Conference of State Legislatures reports that eight states -- Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, and South Dakota --currently require or request that voters present a photo ID at the polls [this 2011 article is dated]. Another 20 or so states ask for some form of identification but do not require a photograph. And new, restrictive laws have been proposed in more than 30 states, include provisions that require voters to provide proof of citizenship.
Regardless of the specific identification requirements in each state, the end result is greater barriers to eligible voters and significant expense to the states.
From Brennan Center for Justice | Debunking Misinformation on Photo ID | by Keesha Gaskins, Senior Counsel in the Brennan Center's Democracy Program | June 9, 2011
The Wall Street Journal recently published an op-ed (“The Case for Voter ID”) by Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach. In the piece, Kobach touts restrictive voter ID bills, including the Kansas “Secure and Fair Elections Act,” which he drafted and Governor Sam Brownback signed into law a few weeks ago. Kobach argues that (1) voter ID laws will not actually prevent any eligible citizens from voting; and (2) they will prevent in-person voter fraud, which he claims is a substantial problem. But his arguments are built on inaccuracies, unsupported allegations, and flawed reasoning. Because Kobach takes direct aim at the Brennan Center in this op-ed, we thought a thorough review of his claims was in order. We sent a letter to the editors at the Journal rebutting some of his claims, but the paper did not publish it.
All Things Reform | "Your papers, please": Americans are more likely to be killed by a bolt of lightning than commit voter fraud! | March 27, 2011
From a ThinkProgress article, which includes reader commenting -- for a short history of the century-long conservatives' anti-voter agenda in the USA, please read the article.
Brennan Center for Justice | Research and Publications on Voter ID
From MSNBC.com | Voter ID debate could change 2012 landscape | by Tom Curry, National affairs writer | 5/25/2011 2:45:43 PM ET
“It’s very difficult to trace the precise effect of ID laws on actual turnout, since there are so many things that can affect participation,” said Daniel Tokaji, an election law expert at Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law.
But, he said “there is considerable evidence about who doesn’t have government-issued photo ID, which shows that certain groups – such as elderly, disabled, minority, and poor voters — are likely to be especially hard hit.”
From National Conference of State Legislatures | 2011 Elections Legislation Database: Voter Identification
This database contains state legislation related to the administration of elections for voter identification that was introduced in the states in 2011.
From OpenCongress | H.R.108
Short: Voting Opportunity and Technology Enhancement Rights Act of 2011 as introduced.
Official: To protect voting rights and to improve the administration of Federal elections, and for other purposes. as introduced.
All Things Reform | Five ways to fight North Carolina bill on voter ID | March 10, 2011
From Rock the Vote blog, which offers reader commenting:
"A restrictive photo ID bill was introduced in North Carolina today, making it harder to vote for more than 500,000 currently-registered voters who do not have a state-issued ID." ...
Here’s five things you can do to take action around the bill.