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April 28, 2005

Georgia requires ID to vote

From StateLine:

Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue (R) signed a law April 22 that requires voters to show a photo ID before voting, giving his state one of the stiffest election laws in the country. Similar photo ID bills passed the legislatures in both Indiana, where Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) has said he will sign it, and in Wisconsin, where Gov. Jim Doyle (D) has vowed a veto. South Carolina also requires a photo ID...

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) already has vowed to file a court challenge to Georgia's new law, which also drew angry protests from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and Jackson, who is planning a voters' rights rally in Georgia this summer.

"For disenfranchised populations, particularly minority populations, who have experienced problems in the past, this is another obstacle," said Charlie Mitchell, a state legislative counsel for the ACLU. "It may not keep a lot of people from the polls. But that's not the point. Even if it keeps some people from the polls, there must be a compelling state interest to restrict anyone's right to vote, and there is no example of this."

Excuse me while I try to stop laughing. Showing a photo ID is an obstacle?!? Exactly how stupid do these people think Black folk are? If reaching in your back pocket (or purse) and pulling out a driver's license is too hard for someone to manage, do we really need them deciding important issues like elections? Second, while I'm not Black, I'd be as mad a heck if someone went around saying I was too stupid to know how to show a photo ID. I've been pretty impressed with the intelligence of Black people, and I don't for a minute believe that they would be any less able to do such a simple act as any other person.

I have to take Mark Matthews, who wrote the article for StateLine to task as well. The article begins with this line:

Voting in some states soon may feel like checking into the airport: Get ready to flash some photo identification.

It doesn't seem Mark gets out all that much, does it. At least not to an airport, anyway.

Posted by Danny Carlton at April 28, 2005 10:27 AM

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