Yesterday marked a big win for the state of Arkansas and the case for Voter ID. The Arkansas State House voted 52-45 to override the veto of Governor Mike Beebe of the state’s Voter ID bill SB2. The law will require voters to show photo identification at polling locations to cast a ballot during elections. The Governor called the bill “an expensive solution to a non-existent problem”, however the majority of Arkansas’ Representatives did not see it the same way as the Senate passed an override by a margin of 21-12 last week. Even House Speaker Davy Carter, who did not vote for the bill when it passed the House last month, supported the override.
The new law will require Arkansas to provide a free photo ID to voters who don’t have one, although the requirement won’t take effect until there is funding for the IDs or until January, whichever occurs last. Currently poll workers must ask for identification, but voters don’t have to show it to cast a ballot. Under the new law, voters who don’t show photo identification can cast provisional ballots. Those ballots would be counted only if voters provide ID to county election officials or, before noon on the Monday following an election, sign an affidavit stating they are indigent or have a religious objection to being photographed.