Voter ID: fraud and suppression

If I had $50 million dollars of taxpayer money and I really wanted to improve voter identification and reduce fraud, I would use that money to set up locations at polling stations where people could quickly and conveniently get a government ID that could immediately be used to vote. You would get same-day registration (as we do today), a one-step process, people get a useful ID that can be used for other purposes as well, and as a side effect you get a reduction in the minuscule amount of identity fraud that actually occurs on voting day. It serves the final goal, while at the same time providing a useful service to the hundreds of thousands of people who go through same-day registration today.

If I had $50 million dollars of taxpayer money and really wanted to suppress voters, I would use that money to set up an alternate, confusing “provisional” voting method that would do nothing at all to help those who have no ID today, while slowing down the entire electoral system, causing endless litigation over the validity of those votes, and throwing away large numbers of those “provisional” ballots because of the difficulties involved in confirming them. And putting in place a process that, in the end, provides NO useful service to those who are actually voting, nor does it help them vote in the next election, and really gains no benefit for that $50 million.

Guess which one the MN Voter ID Amendment puts in place?

If you really want to understand whether a law being proposed is really a voter ID law intended to reduce fraud vs. a voter suppression attempt, just ask your representatives how best to spend $50 million in taxpayer dollars. If their answer involves spending that money to actually help people get an ID and make it easier for them to vote, it’s the first one. If their answer involves spending that money only to make legitimate voters’ lives more difficult, then it’s the second one. If the answer involves making voting more difficult for the elderly, the disabled, lower economic classes and absentee voters, then it’s DEFINITELY a suppression effort.

If the answer means that under the new law, at the end of election day, FEWER total eligible voters will have been able to cast votes than otherwise would have, then you have a law that is being put in place to suppress votes.

Guess which one the MN Voter ID Amendment does?

This is why I’m voting “No” on the Voter ID Amendment.

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