Voter Rights

The Obama administration, through the Holder Justice Department, has blocked another voter photo ID law, this time in Texas.  Thomas Perez, DoJ’s Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division, insists

According to the state’s own data, a Hispanic registered voter is at least 46.5 percent, and potentially 120.0 percent, more likely than a non-Hispanic registered voter to lack this identification.

Even using the data most favorable to the state…that disparity is statistically significant[.]

Perez also noted that the Texas law allowed voters to show military ID, a US citizenship certificate, a US passport, or a license to carry a concealed handgun, but the state did not provide any statistics noting how many people lack state ID but have the other allowable forms.

I cannot conclude that the state [of Texas] has sustained its burden [of showing law has neither a discriminatory purpose nor effect]

This is echoed by Luis Figueroa, a staff attorney with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund:

The photo ID law would disproportionately affect poor and minority voters, who are least likely to have any of the required forms of identification or the documentation needed to obtain one[.]  It also would hurt students because college or university IDs would not be accepted[.]

Hmm….  So, on the basis of speculation that nefarious ends might occur at some time in the future—a speculation that Texas failed to disprove—and on the baldly asserted but wholly unsubstantiated claim of inconveniences, Texas’ voters’ ballot choices will continue to be exposed to invalidation through the voter fraud that a photo ID law would have greatly mitigated.

Moreover, what Perez apparently chose to ignore, is the ease with which a voter photo ID is, in fact, obtainable—and how many groups (vis., disabled, elderly) are exempted from the requirement.  And the consequences of showing up at the polling station without such an ID: voters who arrive without one of seven acceptable forms of photo IDs issued by the state or federal government would be given a provisional ballot.  That ballot would count if the voter then brings an approved ID to the registrar’s office within six days of the election—including an ID obtained after casting the ballot.

Congressman Lamar Smith (R, TX), House Judiciary Committee Chairman, has the right of it:

Voter ID laws help ensure the integrity of our elections and protect the rights of lawful voters.  If citizens are required to show ID in order to open a bank account, cash a check, drive a car or board a plane, how much more important is it to show ID in order to exercise one of our most valuable democratic rights?  This is an abuse of executive authority and an affront to the citizens of Texas.

Smith also noted that the Texas law to which Obama and Holder object was based on an Indiana law that has been upheld by the Supreme Court.

Finally, recall that this is the same Progressive administration that withdrew from two cases of voter intimidation—after confessions and guilty pleas had been obtained.  It’s clear that this is an administration that condones voter fraud, that wants votes diluted by illegal voters.

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