Supreme Court, States can demand photo ID before Voting

Supreme Court: States can demand photo ID before Voting

Todays Supreme Court Decision has been a polarizing issue between Republicans, who believe that a photo identification is a basic document used in most financial transactions in America today,  will ultimatly reduce voter fraud, and Democrats, who believe that the poor and old members of the electorate will not be able to vote  thus disenfranchising voters who are typically Democrat.

Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reed and Spreaker Pelosi came out in opposition to the High Courts decision.

“The Court’s decision today places obstacles to the fundamental rights of American citizens – especially the poor, the elderly, and individuals with disabilities – to participate in the electoral process,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said. “Requiring American citizens pay for underlying documents needed for an identification card and travel to distant motor vehicle locations for processing hinders – and diminishes – their right to vote.”

Hillary Clinton is against this decision as well. She has introduced the Count Every Vote Act which allows for same-day registration and allows voters who don’t have ID to vote.  She says that requiring ID is oppressive

Read the Descison here

07-21 Crawford v. Marion County Election Bd. (4/28/08)  [4/28/2008]   (398k)  

The Lead Opinion writen by Justice Stevens,  The Dissenting Opinion written by Justice Breyer

Writing the court’s lead opinion, Justice John Paul Stevens said the risk of voter fraud is “real” and that fraud “could affect the outcome of a close election.” States, he said, have a “valid interest in protecting the integrity and reliability of the electoral process.”

Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, David Souter and Stephen Breyer dissented. Writing for himself and Ginsburg, Souter said the law “imposes an unreasonable and irrelevant burden on voters who are poor and old.”

Here is what the Associated Press is Reporting

WASHINGTON (AP) – States can require voters to produce photo identification, the Supreme Court ruled Monday, upholding a Republican-inspired law that Democrats say will keep some poor, older and minority voters from casting ballots.

Twenty-five states require some form of ID, and the court’s 6-3 decision rejecting a challenge to Indiana’s strict voter ID law could encourage others to adopt their own measures. Oklahoma legislators said the decision should help them get a version approved.

The ruling means the ID requirement will be in effect for next week’s presidential primary in Indiana, where a significant number of new voters are expected to turn out for the Democratic contest between Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama.

The results could say something about the effect of the law, either because a large number of voters will lack identification and be forced to cast provisional ballots or because the number turns out to be small.

Supporters of the law say it’s all about preventing fraud.

States who request Photo Identification to Vote, States who require ID (non Photo) to vote


Table 1:  State Requirements for Voter Identification

States That Request Photo ID
South Dakota

States that Require ID (photo not required)
New Mexico
North Dakota
South Carolina

Supreme Court, States can demand photo ID before Voting Supreme Court, States can demand photo ID before Voting States can demand photo ID for Voting

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