Monday, May 16, 2016

Missouri Legislature Seeks to Amend Constitution to Enact Photo Voter ID

The Missouri legislature has passed a bill to put a constitutional amendment, allowing a photo voter ID law, on the ballot this November. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch published an article overviewing the paths now available to the bill's potential enactment.  Missouri has struggled to enact the law, facing steep opposition by the left and a 2006 court ruling making the first iteration unconstitutional. The legislation has been a hotly debated topic throughout the session and could face a Governor’s veto and a subsequent override from the legislature.

Under the language that would go into effect upon voter approval, voters without an ID will be able to sign a form saying that they don’t have an ID, are who they claim to be, and recognize that voter ID is the law of the land.

If they decline to sign the form, they could cast a provisional ballot; the vote would count if the person could later prove their identity.
The state would also pay for IDs and source documents needed to obtain them. If the state did not appropriate money in any given year, the requirements would not be in effect.

Election integrity continues to be the driving force behind voter ID and generally speaking, the public overwhelmingly favors the laws. Republican representatives also addressed the continued doomsday rhetoric from the left:

”The folks on the other side, I certainly understand and sympathize where they’re coming from, because they are coming at this issue from a civil rights perspective,” said state Rep. Shamed Dogan, R-Ballwin.

”There’s no way I would be supporting this if it disenfranchised people who look like me — people who are my ancestors, people who are my relatives, people who are my best friends,” Dogan, who is black, said.

It is likely that in November voters in Missouri will have a say in the integrity of their elections due in no small part to the dedication of their own elected officials. 

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