Yet More Republican Voter Suppression

Tom Daschle points out some rather disturbing voting provisions in the REAL ID Act:REAL ID is a driver's license, not a citizenship or a voting card. At this moment, 12% of the voting age population lacks a driver's license - and you could expect that number to be much higher among the poor and others who have faced numerous challenges as they have tried to exercise their right to vote.

The documents required by REAL ID to secure a driver's license include a birth certificate, passport or naturalization papers, a photo identity document, and proof of Social Security number.

Obtaining such documents can be difficult, even for those not displaced by the devastation of a hurricane.

For all these reasons, I have come to the conclusion that for some, a requirement for photo identification constitutes nothing short of a modern day poll tax.

This is the main reason why I never understood those who believed that it was possible to pass good election reform legislation at the federal level with the current makeup of Congress. In the last thirty years, when have Republicans in D.C. ever worked to help improve voting access for minorities? I don't want this Congress getting anywhere near election reform legislation. Hell, they can't pass an anti-immigration law without throwing in a provision to suppress the vote.

Anyway, Dsachle will be at Think Progress posting comments in a few minutes. I'm sure the junkies at MyDD would be interested to see if he will comment on this story about his possible White House aspirations.

Tags: Republicans (all tags)



Old Hat
EPIC and any other citizen privacy vanguard worth its salt has only been screaming about this since the day the RealCON ID act was signed into law.  Where was the outrage from Daschle then?  Could it because good ol' Tom is hot on the campaign trail??

by Zen Warrior 2005-10-25 08:03AM | 0 recs
Tom would be a great President...
He really would work for all Americans, unlike the crooks in office now.


by ultraworld 2005-10-25 08:26AM | 0 recs


by ultraworld 2005-10-25 08:28AM | 0 recs
I'm a constitutional lawyer.
I even took several courses in law school on election law.  Clearly, it can be argued that mandating a voter ID in the form of a driver license which costs money in order to vote is unconstitutional as was the poll taxes in the South.  14th am. Equal Protection.

The only way around it would be to have a provision in the law whereby the poor and elderly/infirm can bypass the process of paying for the license/ID AND taking a picture for the ID.  However, even in this instance, a good argument coul be made that someone like my now deceased grandmother (who could not really speak English) could nnot PHYSICALLY make it down to the DMV during the last ten years of her life to snap a picture.  Btw, she never had or even applied for a driver license.  There are many people in this country who don't.  And, not just in urban areas.  She came from rural northern NM.

Anyway, even if something like this is eventually held uncon, it will have its desired effect by creating a chilling effect on people who are poor and/or elderly from voting.  How many of these people will bother with voting when all these hoops are placed in the way that they have to jump through.

This is sad and perhaps the most fascist laws to ever come down the pike since the white primary laws in Texas, the poll tax, and literacy tests.

by jgarcia 2005-10-25 08:10AM | 0 recs
One court, at least
Has come to that conclusion, when the judge overturned Georgia's Voter ID law.  He found that despite the presence of a fee waiver for those who are destitute, the photo id requirement still represented a poll tax.

Hopefully, that will stand up.

by Drew 2005-10-25 08:42AM | 0 recs
Daschle for President?
Good God!  Didn't we learn our lesson last time about nominating a candidate with little fight in him (or her)?
by space 2005-10-25 08:53AM | 0 recs
Some Disabled Persons cannot get Driver's License
Besides all the other requirements to get a driver's license, you must pass an initial driver's test to get this license.  Some disbled people are not physically able to do so, so this would discriminate against them.  This is just another reason why requiring a driver's license to vote would be a terrible idea.
by BobStephens45 2005-10-25 09:30AM | 0 recs
I have to strongly disagree...
I strongly disagree with the democratic stance on requiring identification for voting.  I've actually worked for an election commission, and not as just a polling place worker, but as someone in the main office dealing with all aspects of an election.  Under the current system of voter registration and voting procedures in most communities there are SERIOUS security concerns.  It would be EXTREMLY easy for someone, or a group of people, to cast ballots for individuals who don't exist or aren't voting.  The ability to dramatically change the outcome of an election is within the hands of anyone with a bit of knowledge of election law, a few stamps and a copier.  We have a DESPERATE NEED for a unified system of registration, voting, and identification in this country.
I shutter to think how often voter fraud could be happening.
by IrnBru001 2005-10-25 11:06AM | 0 recs


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