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Thursday, May 3, 2012

From Matt Wuerker

Copyright 2012 by Matt Wuerker. Used by permission.

Comments (15)


Citizen's United is the law of the land. Get over it.

That's what they said about Dred Scott.

Soooo . . . . it's discriminatory to ask for ID for beer, wine or smokes? Last time I checked, no one was saying it's too hard for minorities or ANYONE to show photo ID for those. And as for huge entities attempting to buy elections, BOTH sides do that. Corporations AND Unions. Let's see who funds the negative campaign against a SERIOUS PERS reformer.

I'm moving to a new state (Indiana) and they, in the name of protecting the horrible invasion from the south, are going to make me provide about 4 forms of alternate ID to get a drivers license. All this garbage is getting out of hand. Has one of these supposed "illegals" blown up the WTC or has one election recently been decided by one illegal's vote? I'd rather take that risk than be hassled.

IIRC some of the 9/11 terrorists had overstayed their visa...
Regardless, it seems people are perfectly able to obtain ID to go about the rest of their lives.
Perhaps for them voting just isn't that important ?

Voting is a constitutionally protected right (some would even say a duty). Buying "beer, wine and smokes" is not. Do you honestly not see the difference?

The voter participation rate in this country is already embarrassingly low compared to most other represenatative democracies. It's astounding to me that some people actually want to make it worse.

The current system of address verification and signature-matching works just fine to prevent multiple voting by one person. There's no substantive evidence to the contrary. This shouldn't be surprising -- voter impersonation is a felony with harsh criminal penalties and no real incentive. Unlike, say, bank robbery, there's no potential upside for the individual.

There is already a system in place to make sure your ballot is valid and that you are registered to vote.

Being forced to show your ID means there will be tens of thousands of local gatekeepers across the US checking ID cards over. Even if that is never abused, there are inevitably going to be people who don't look similar enough to a five-year old photo, or the gatekeeper is mistaken about some detail of the presented ID or policies. US citizens with a right to vote will get turned away. Things like this already happen every election where these ID requirements don't even exist.

There will be a chilling effect on people who are US citizens but aren't sure if they might have misdemeanor warrants or owe taxes. They have no idea who is going to be checking their ID and what they're going to do with it, so they'll stay home, not vote, and not risk it. Or their license expired last year and for these kinds of reasons they're reluctant to go to the DMV. Having minor infractions with the police or owing the IRS doesn't nullify your right to vote.

These policies make having a state-issued ID a requirement to practice a fundamental duty of being a US citizen. The backup is likely to be that you'll need to scrounge up birth certificates and corroborating forms of identification and jump through bureaucratic hoops. This will prevent people from voting.

Tankfilter: Only naturalized US citizens can register to vote. Somebody on a visa sneaking into a voting booth isn't going to affect anything, the ballot will be thrown out. A terrorist here to kill people will work around whatever they need to work around to do what they plan to do. You don't design your country around assuming everybody is the worst imaginable kind of human. That's how you get the TSA. Still haven't caught a terrorist. These laws don't do anything to stop bad guys being bad guys. They're not going to prevent someone voting twice. Mail-in voting here in OR should be a clue. You only need to treat the ballots as illegitimate until proven otherwise, not people.

These laws force anybody with an lost, expired, suspended, or hole-punched driver's license to go to the DMV and get a new drivers license, a standard ID, or "voter" ID in certain states just to vote. That costs a little bit of money, it takes time, it takes knowing how to navigate the system. It calls for having your shit together to some extent. It means that if you weren't previously aware of that policy you're going to be caught by surprise on election day and turned away having not voted after having tried to do the the right thing and took the time to vote. You're absolutely going to exclude many elderly that no longer drive and aren't very savvy. You're going to disenfranchise downtrodden poor and minorities. And that's exactly why some desire these policies. It's not about preventing fraud. They've thought that through and realize this, and they don't want riffraff participating.

You've got to hand it to the republicans. They have used their time in office to focus on what matters: making it hard for busy, poor, or elderly folks to vote, gerrymandering electoral districts in favor of rural residents, stacking the courts, and handing out cash to their base. They know how this game is played and have wrung the most out of their disappearing elderly white base, while the stupid democrats keep thinking demographics--or even truth-- matter. Hell, even when they've won, they still LOST (Bush vs. Gore; Obama- financial crisis).

I sure hope you are right about Dred Scott Jack, but I don't see much hope on the horizon. Hell the progressives spend most of their time arguing among themselves, one charismatic GOP hispanic will break that demographic lock, and the majority of SCOTUS lives in the Faux bubble (they were already bought and paid for anyway). We're living in another gilded age, and it will likely take a structural shock to change it. But I still hope you are right.

I'd venture a guess that a lot of people who think you should have to show ID to vote don't think you shouldnt have to show ID to buy a gun. Just a guess.

Shadrach, I'd hope your post is sarcasm.
For if it is not you have some very powerful rose coloured glasses...
Are we to believe those poor hard working persons don't already possess ID ?
That no democrat ever gerrymandered election districts ?
Stacking courts you say ?
I recall FDR tried that when he didn't like the decisions he was getting from the SC ...Wanted to jam some more of "his guys" on the bench.
And handing out cash to their "base" ?
Both parties are guilty of that...

Are we to believe those poor hard working persons don't already possess ID ?

It's a big country, plenty people don't have valid ID.

And how about the disparity that the cartoonist is referring to in his drawing here? We don't care who has influence in our elections - legal citizen or not - when it comes to financing them, but when it comes to voting, we do? It's ridiculous. Voter ID laws are a Big-Brother solution to a non- problem. And belies the Republicans' true intentions - to disenfranchise voters who typically vote against them.

And as for huge entities attempting to buy elections, BOTH sides do that. Corporations AND Unions.

Corporations actually outspend unions by about 15 to 1, on average. But that's not the point, corporations donate to Democrats just slightly less than they do to Republicans, so sensible campaign finance reform is truly a bi-partisan issue. Big money corrupts whether on the right or left, and whether it comes from unions, business or ideological interests.

Voter i.d. requirements, registered voter list purging for alleged felons, and newly burdensome voter registration processes are all designed to suppress the vote, because Republican candidates do better that way.


Ah yes the old "pox on both their houses". I have never been under any illusion that the dems are clean, but they are the only other game in town, and they at least occasionally acknowledge problems and sometimes try to do something about them. They don't spend what limited legislature time they have to make up fake issues like voter fraud just so they make it more difficult for groups that don't vote for them to vote (Youth, elderly, immigrants, working moms, etc.). VOTER FRAUD is not a problem, but in the aggregate they will shave a few points off of the dem's election counts--and every point matters to them. Cynics. Utter cynics.

We've got real problems in the world, and cynical fake ones piss me off.

Frankly though, its not surprising. My adult life has been defined by watching r's dismantle things that once worked well, brazenly lie about basic economics, science, wars, taxes. They have abused the Senate made up filibuster rule so that 11% of the population can veto the rest of the country (40 votes). They have stacked every level of the bench and blocked every democratic judge they could. They have consistently cut taxes for the rich while doing what they could to salvage government spending on anything other then defense contractors and killing brown people. What has happened to government funded education in this country is a travesty. They freaking blocked wall street reform!

Say what you will about Obamacare, he tried to fix an utterly broken Health care system--the worst and most expensive in the industrialized world by orders of magnitude. What say the republicans? Nothing but tax cuts for the rich--which even their economists acknowledge don't pay for themselves--and salvaging programs that help the very poor (Social security and Medicare). Nixon would be almost a commie today. Intellectually the republican party has collapsed. They are a national disgrace, since democracy needs a vibrant debate. Instead we've got one party of weak kneed corporate suck up losers who occasionally try, and one party of utterly disingenuous cynics who want the country to fail so that they can gain power again just to dismantle it and hand it off to rich folks.

Its a gilded age my friend and if you just want to cast a pox on both houses, then you won't be wrong, but that simply obscures the truth and promotes the idea that government can't solve problems. But Gov is the only game we little folks have, so if it doesn't work, guess who wins? Not us.


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