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Tough ID laws could block thousands of 2012 votes

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Tough ID laws could block thousands of 2012 votes

 
  • FILE - In this June 19, 2012 file photo, Mississippi Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann holds a postcard to help identify voters in need of a free state government issued card that will be issued through his office at no charge, in Jackson, Miss. More than two dozen states have some form of ID requirement, and 11 of those passed new rules over the past two years largely at the urging of Republicans who say they want to prevent fraud. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, File)

    FILE - In this June 19, 2012 file ...

  • FILE - In this Jan. 10, 2012 file photo, election officials check the photo identification card of a voter in Cimarron, Kan. Voter ID laws designed to deter fraud may end up blocking thousands of legitimate ballots. As more states put in place strict voter ID rules, an AP review of temporary ballots from Indiana and Georgia, which first adopted the most stringent standards, found that more than 1,200 such votes were tossed during the 2008 general election. (AP Photo/The The Hutchinson News, Travis Morisse, File)

    FILE - In this Jan. 10, 2012 file ...

  • FILE - In this Jan. 10, 2012 file photo, election officials check the photo identification card of a voter in Cimarron, Kan. Voter ID laws designed to deter fraud may end up blocking thousands of legitimate ballots. As more states put in place strict voter ID rules, an AP review of temporary ballots from Indiana and Georgia, which first adopted the most stringent standards, found that more than 1,200 such votes were tossed during the 2008 general election. (AP Photo/The The Hutchinson News, Travis Morisse, File)

    FILE - In this Jan. 10, 2012 file ...

When Edward and Mary Weidenbener went to vote in Indiana's primary in May, they didn't realize that state law required them to bring government photo IDs such as a driver's license or passport.

The husband and wife, both approaching 90 years old, had to use a temporary ballot that would be verified later, even though they knew the people working the polling site that day. Unaware that Indiana law obligated them to follow up with the county election board, the Weidenbeners ultimately had their votes rejected - news to them until informed recently by an Associated Press reporter.

Edward Weidenbener, a World War II veteran who had voted for Mitt Romney in the Republican presidential contest, said he was surprised by the rules and the consequences.

"A lot of people don't have a photo ID. They'll be automatically disenfranchised," he said.

As more states put in place strict voter ID rules, an AP review of temporary ballots from Indiana and Georgia, which first adopted the most stringent standards, found that more than 1,200 such votes were tossed during the 2008 general election.

During sparsely attended primaries this year in Georgia, Indiana and Tennessee, the states implementing the toughest laws, hundreds more ballots were blocked.

The numbers suggest that the legitimate votes rejected by the laws are far more numerous than are the cases of fraud that advocates of the rules say they are trying to prevent. Thousands more votes could be in jeopardy for this November, when more states with larger populations are looking to have similar rules in place.

More than two dozen states have some form of ID requirement, and 11 of those passed new rules over the past two years largely at the urging of Republicans who say they want to prevent fraud.

Democrats and voting rights groups fear that ID laws could suppress votes among people who may not typically have a driver's license, and disproportionately affect the elderly, poor and minorities. While the number of votes is a small percentage of the overall total, they have the potential to sway a close election. Remember that the 2000 presidential race was decided by a 537-vote margin in Florida.

A Republican leader in Pennsylvania said recently that the state's new ID law would allow Romney to win the state over President Barack Obama.

Supporters of the laws cite anecdotal cases of fraud as a reason that states need to do more to secure elections, but fraud appears to be rare. As part of its effort to build support for voter ID laws, the Republican National Lawyers Association last year published a report that identified some 400 election fraud prosecutions over a decade across the entire country. That's not even one per state per year.

ID laws would not have prevented many of those cases because they involved vote-buying schemes in local elections or people who falsified voter registrations.

Election administrators and academics who monitor the issue said in-person fraud is rare because someone would have to impersonate a registered voter and risk arrest. A 2008 Supreme Court case drew detailed briefs from the federal government, 10 states and other groups that identified only nine potential impersonation cases over the span of several years, according to a tally by the Brennan Center at New York University.

Michael Thielen, executive director of the Republican lawyers group, said its survey was not comprehensive and he believes vote fraud is a serious problem.

"Most of it goes unreported and unprosecuted," he said.

Several election administrators, even those who support ID laws as a barrier to potential fraud, said the rejected ballots in their counties appeared to be legitimate voters who simply did not fulfill their ID obligations.

Donna Sharp, the administrator of elections in Hawkins County, Tenn., said she saw no signs of fraud. Of the seven people who cast absentee ballots, six didn't come in to confirm their identity. Sharp knew one of them personally.

But Sharp said she supports the ID law despite initial concerns. She said most people were aware of the requirement and able to provide their identification, and she thought the rules provided an extra layer of security.

"We want to protect those voters who do need their vote to count - the people who are doing things in an honest manner," Sharp said.

Some administrators speculated that voters who didn't return to verify their identity may have deduced that the ballot wouldn't alter the outcome of the election.

Indiana, Georgia and Tennessee require that voters provide a photo ID at the polls. Failing that, voters can use a temporary ballot that can be verified later, when they must meet with local elections administrators to sort out the matter.

Pennsylvania is putting a similar law in place for the November election. Kansas has comparable rules. Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas and Wisconsin are moving in that direction of having rules set for this year if they survive court challenges and federal approval.

Virginia had a rule allowing voters without proper ID to sign an identity statement; a false claim could make them subject to felony punishment. Under a new law awaiting final approval from the Justice Department, voters who do not bring proper ID, which doesn't necessarily have to have a photo, must use a temporary ballot and later provide ID to the local election board.

Georgia had 873 rejected temporary ballots due to ID from the 2008 general election while only about 300 ID temporary ballots were counted. The state also had 64 ID-related temporary ballots tossed in the presidential primary this year.

Indiana counties that maintained information from the 2008 election reported having hundreds of ballots tossed, and more than 100 more were rejected in the primary this year. The numbers can vary greatly depending on the election: Tippecanoe County, for example, had no ID-related temporary ballots excluded in the primary vote this year compared with 47 in the 2008 general election.

Tennessee had 154 blocked ballots in its March primary.

Keesha Gaskins, a senior counsel at the Brennan Center who has opposed voter ID laws, said she believes the numbers are significant and also underestimate the impact of voter ID laws. She said those numbers don't take into account people who were discouraged from showing up to vote in the first place or who may be turned away by poll workers. Even voters in states with less-strict ID laws may not get the proper explanation about how the process works without ID.

Beyond that, Gaskin said, rejecting even hundreds of ballots in an election is significant.

"These are still people who attempted to vote and who were unable to do so," Gaskins said. "When you compare that to the actual evidence of fraud, the difference is exponential."

by on Jul. 8, 2012 at 7:54 PM
Replies (21-29):
sillygirl83
by Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 5:39 PM
1 mom liked this

Dems just want something to use as an excuse for the spanking they know is coming their way in November.

4kidz916
by Gold Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 6:47 PM
1 mom liked this

Around here you even have to show photo ID to be seen in the ER, Doctor's office, walk in clinics, etc because of high cases of insurance fraud.  And with all the other reasons that you need an ID, I find it hard to belive that so many people don't have one.

Quoting DSamuels:

Proof that THOUSANDS don't have ID?

To be able to do most things you need to do you need ID. You need it to cash a check, to go to the dr or ER, to drive, to get a job, a loan, and a lot of other things. Do they use cash only and live on the street, because I don't know where else they can be staying that doesn't require an ID.

Quoting sweet-a-kins:

Proof of this?

Quoting asfriend:

....because voter fraud would be lessened.


Quoting sweet-a-kins:

A Republican leader in Pennsylvania said recently that the state's new ID law would allow Romney to win the state over President Barack Obama.





The whole reason for these laws



Yes, I do. Thousands don't ...


Quoting 29again:

I wonder.........does the OP have ID?  I would bet she does.  I wonder how difficult it was to get it.... 






mehamil1
by on Jul. 10, 2012 at 6:54 PM

I keep seeing all this chatter about voter fraud. And yet there's so little evidence of voter fraud. So yeah. No. 

Quoting asfriend:

....because voter fraud would be lessened.
Quoting sweet-a-kins:

A Republican leader in Pennsylvania said recently that the state's new ID law would allow Romney to win the state over President Barack Obama.

The whole reason for these laws

Yes, I do. Thousands don't ...

Quoting 29again:

I wonder.........does the OP have ID?  I would bet she does.  I wonder how difficult it was to get it....  


PamR
by Platinum Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 6:56 PM

I'm wondering if there have been any documented cases of someone trying to vote as another person?  I looked up the states that first initiated these ID laws and found that they had none.

kailu1835
by Silver Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 6:58 PM
2 moms liked this

ID's are cheap and available to everyone in the state. It is idiotic to say that people are incapable of providing ID. Nice job victimizing people though.

And I know that in many states that are switching to requiring ID notices are being sent in the mail as part of the votor pamphlet.  They should have known they would need ID.

kailu1835
by Silver Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 7:01 PM
1 mom liked this

 So, what... democrats are too stupid to figure out how to get ID's?  Okay.  If you say so.

Quoting sweet-a-kins:

A Republican leader in Pennsylvania said recently that the state's new ID law would allow Romney to win the state over President Barack Obama.


The whole reason for these laws

Yes, I do. Thousands don't ...


Quoting 29again:

I wonder.........does the OP have ID?  I would bet she does.  I wonder how difficult it was to get it.... 

 

babiesbabybaby development

4kidz916
by Gold Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 7:05 PM
1 mom liked this

I'm searching for some sort of report with that info and I haven't found anything listed for any state.  I do know that here in NC a few months back there was a case where a convicted felon voted in the 2008 election and he was charged.  He ended up pleaing down the charges but there was much talk about how the voter ID law could have prevented his vote. 

Quoting PamR:

I'm wondering if there have been any documented cases of someone trying to vote as another person?  I looked up the states that first initiated these ID laws and found that they had none.


4kidz916
by Gold Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 7:14 PM
1 mom liked this

Here's another article I found.  While these aren't documented voter fraud cases, something does sound fishy here:

110 Year Olds Vote Strong in NC

By  | Posted in Elections & Campaigns | 

So far in early voting 110 year olds have  made a pretty good showing; 2214 of them have voted either by mail or at a one-stop site (214 by mail and 2,000 at early voting sites).  There are 1,420 Democrats in this group, 717 Republicans and 77 Unaffiliated voters.

Nothing against very old voters, but it is funny that these 110 year olds live in only 34 counties and 87% of them live in 4 counties -  Guilford has voted 681 of them so far, Forsyth - 581, Cumberland - 427 and Davidson voted 230.

Some more facts about these older voters:  1,923 of this year’s group also voted in the 2008 General Election during early voting – they were only 108 back then.  In 2008 a total 9,688 108 year olds voted early.

And just in case you thought 110 was pretty old, Gaston County data shows that  a 154 year old voter has cast a ballot and Granville County’s data reflects a voter who is 160 years old.

Absentee data is available for download from the State Board of Elections website.

asfriend
by on Jul. 10, 2012 at 7:37 PM
Defer to her, she would know.


Quoting kailu1835:

 So, what... democrats are too stupid to figure out how to get ID's?  Okay.  If you say so.


Quoting sweet-a-kins:

A Republican leader in Pennsylvania said recently that the state's new ID law would allow Romney to win the state over President Barack Obama.


The whole reason for these laws

Yes, I do. Thousands don't ...



Quoting 29again:


I wonder.........does the OP have ID?  I would bet she does.  I wonder how difficult it was to get it.... 


 


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