Voter ID

The Misinformed Case for Voter ID

Stricter new requirements may sound reasonable, but they're not reasonable for everyone-or reasonable for democracy.

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The logic behind laws requiring voters to provide a government-issued photo identification card is simple and seductive: If you need to show an ID to board a plane, open a bank account, get public aid or do any number of other things, it only makes sense to do the same before casting a ballot.

That was what Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican, said in 2011 as he signed a law imposing this new mandate. "There really is no barrier for people," he asserted. "Particularly in a society where people need photo identification for just about everything else, including checking out a book from the library … it's a reasonable requirement."

Many of the advocates can't imagine anyone functioning in 21st-century America without valid proof of identity. So they are skeptical that requiring it could possibly be an obstacle to voting. They also tend to believe that anyone who lacks something so basic deserves no accommodation.

These attitudes reflect a failure to understand the lives of many Americans. In the suit challenging the Wisconsin law, which recently was overturned by a federal court, a parade of people attested that they lacked the required ID and, in many cases, couldn't easily get it.

One of them was Ruthelle Frank, a former member of the village board of Brokaw. She has never had a driver's license or state ID, and her 1927 birth certificate has a misspelling. To get it fixed, she would have to undertake a legal process that could cost $200.

Another was Mariannis Ginorio, a young Milwaukee woman. She had no driver's license, and Wisconsin doesn't accept birth certificates from her native Puerto Rico issued before 2010. Sam Bulmer, a homeless Air Force veteran, could offer only a federal Veterans Identification Card—which is not on the list of IDs recognized by the state.

Statewide, the court concluded, 300,000 eligible voters don't have the documents needed for voting. In the normal course of life, people like this don't need them.

Fifteen percent of white adults in Wisconsin, and half of blacks and Hispanics, don't drive. Passport holders are a minority of the population. A lot of people don't need a photo ID to board a plane because they don't fly.

In fact, the Transportation Security Administration doesn't bar anyone who shows up without an ID. In that case, the TSA says, "You'll be able to fly as long as you provide us with some information that will help us determine you are who you say you are."

Seniors can verify their eligibility for Social Security without a photo ID. Food stamps? Federal regulations say "any documents which reasonably establish the applicant's identity must be accepted, and no requirement for a specific document, such as a birth certificate, may be imposed." Libraries will generally accept a utility bill or something similar to issue a card.

Opening a bank account? Larry Dupuis, a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin Foundation, says he never had to show an ID to open his account, which he did some two decades ago. "It's really a post-9/11 thing," he says, for banks to require one. But many poor people don't have bank accounts.

Those activities, in any event, are not constitutionally guaranteed, which voting is. The government can impose regulations that affect constitutional rights. But it must have a good reason, and the rules can't be an undue burden. States can mandate a 24-hour waiting period for abortions, which the Supreme Court says is a modest restriction justified by "the state's interest in protecting the life of the unborn."

Under federal law, you may buy a gun from a private seller without an ID. Licensed dealers must see photo identification, despite the Second Amendment. That's not hard to justify because if a person forbidden to own firearms acquires one—say a convicted felon—the outcome may be fatal.

If a person forbidden to vote manages to cast a ballot by pretending to be someone else, by contrast, the election result will almost never be affected. Besides, the sort of fraud that an ID would prevent is exceedingly rare. The court in Wisconsin found the requirement would block vastly more legal voters than fraudulent ones.

States have long had procedures that discourage fraud by impersonation without blocking legitimate voters from the polls. The stricter new requirements may sound reasonable, but they're not reasonable for everyone—or reasonable for democracy.

NEXT: Georgia City Considers Requiring a Permit to Ring Somebody's Doorbell

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  1. Oh, where to start…

    Never mind. I wish this were my PREFERRED Steven Chapman article, “Steven Chapman is on vacation this week.”

    1. LOL

  2. Fine. How about a purple thumb? Iraq has better control of voter fraud than we do.

    1. Shorter me: “what poppavein said”

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    2. Any attempt to require any kind of Voter check is racist!

    3. But we already get the “I Voted” stickers. Isn’t that enough you racist, koch-loving, BOOOOSH-voting Rethuglicans!!!

    4. How about a purple thumb?

      Bingo. A simple and in no way burdensome way to prevent voter fraud.

      All you have to do to vote in VA is tell them your name and address. If you don’t think there are people making the rounds to different precincts armed with a list of nonvoters/dead people then you’re very very naive.

      Precinct 1: I’m John Jones 123 Fake Street.
      Precinct 2: I’m Rick Roberts, 456 Palm Court.
      Precinct 3: I’m Bob Barrow, 789 Grave Avenue.

      It’s a retarded fucking system.

      1. “All you have to do to vote in VA is tell them your name and address.”

        No, the Left assures me that this NEVER happens.

        1. And roads without policemen have no speeding cars on them.

          Vote early, vote often.

      2. Absentee ballots no have thumbs.

        1. “Absentee ballots no have thumbs.”

          And there’s never a whiff of corruption involving absentee ballots.

          http://www.miamiherald.com/201…..-aide.html

          BTW, This is this guy’s former aide.

          http://time.com/99049/congress…..-on-cspan/

          TIME doesn’t mention his party affiliation so he must be a D.

    5. “How about a purple thumb?”

      I actually think some kind of marking system like that would be fine.

      1. Right. Hell, you don’t even need the voter rolls anymore really. Just go in, vote, get your thumb dipped. It would have to be a really good dye, something that couldn’t be scrubbed off very easily at all, but I would assume some company has just the thing.

        1. Wasn’t there a story earlier this week about some foaming ATM with dye? Maybe they’re up to the job.

          1. foaming ATM

            ew

        2. Isn’t that dye they put in the garment protector thingy supposed to be a bitch to clean out?

          Or the dye they put in bags of money.

        3. Silver nitrate. That stuff doesn’t leave your thumb for weeks, until the skin sloughs off.

        4. ehhhh… I agree with the idea, but in a first world country any idiot can go to home depot (or equivalent) and by any number of solvents (acetone is a pretty simple go-to for almost every adhesive or dye) to wipe off even really strong dyes.

          Except for maybe the silver nitrate the guy below said. I don’t think you can take that off

      2. I’d open it up to literally everybody — prisoners, children, tourists. If you’re thumb is unmarked, vote! No residency, no id, no age check, nothing.

        1. Voting is almost worthless. I only do it because the pols check this shit and I want to scare them when I write them.

        2. No privacy intrusion of any kind.

        3. Pols are always yapping about the importance of voting; here ya go!

        1. I’d bet money there would be at least one precinct in the country where the vote tally would drop if you implemented this.

          1. You’d better start looking for suckers willing to bet against you.

            1. Those type of suckers would be easy to find. Unfortunately, those are the exact kind of people who would weasel their way out of paying. They’d retroactively move the goal posts or declare extenuating circumstances, etc.

        2. I like it.

          There’d be a stink about absentee voting though.

          1. Yup, at least the in-advance kind. You could print ballots in advance and hand them out at will so people could take them on vacations or business trips and submit remotely; just make sure all election offices use the same ink etc.

      3. Wrong. That might, MIGHT, prevent double votes but it does nothing to assure you are a citizen with the constitutional right to vote.

    6. Purple thumb? That’s practically blackface. Your motivations must be racist.

  3. I can’t help myself.

    The logic behind laws requiring voters to provide a government-issued photo identification card is simple and seductive: If you need to show an ID to board a plane, open a bank account, get public aid or do any number of other things, it only makes sense to do the same before casting a ballot.

    FALSE PREMISE. “The logic behind” requiring that people who wish to vote prove that they are eligible to do so, is that this country – and states and localities – have LAWS about who can vote and who can’t. And there are docuemented cases where people who were ineligible to vote did, or voted multiple times, or yada yada yada.

    SO – “the logix behind” requiring some sort of ID is to VERIFY THAT THE PERSON SEEKING TO VOTE ACTUALLY IS ELIGIBLE TO DO SO.

    The other decoy shit Chapman so helpfully listed are things that require identification, and that some people have thus offered as evidence that “requiring identification for banal shit exists, so why is it a big deal for voting. Which actual IS more important than your abilility to buy some booze or cigarettes, etc.” (to some people).

    So, fuck you as usual, Chapman – false premise, ignore actual issues that have occurred, list some projected/speculated number of people who “might” have a problem….

    Disingenuous.

    The End

    1. You just said fuck you to everyone who takes the small government position, ie no vote ID.

      1. I thought the REAL LIBERTARIAN POSISHIONNNNNZ was no voting at all?!?

        I’m not sure I make the connection between voter IDs and statism, unless you go all slippery slope on me and start screaming about national ID.

        I’d also be happy with the purple thumb approach.

        1. I’m a centrist classical liberal not a libertarian. They aren’t synonyms.

      2. Fuck off New Bo.

        1. I’m not a black multi-millionaire under 40 so I don’t know why you called me a New Bo.

      3. And then you complain when I consider you a prog…
        The “small government” position that conveniently coincides with the DNC talking points.

        1. You know that libertarianism is separate from conservatism right? By your logic Reason is a leftist magazine because they support marijuana legalization, and former REPUBLICAN Governor of New Mexico Gary Johnson also opposes voter ID requirements.

          1. Gary Johnson, for whom I’d have voted for in 2012 if I’d been a US citizen, is wrong. You see, I didn’t grow up in the US. I don’t have an ounce of white guilt in me. Reason and Gary Johnson have plenty. It’s important that everyone in the country believes that the elections are fair. Many millions of Americans suspect that the Democrats engage in voter fraud. Requiring voters to prove that they are who they claim they are and eligible to vote is an important step to prove that the rule of law is followed and that the US elections are fair. That’s how it’s done in most civilized countries. However, the Democratic activists have to resort to voter fraud and, more importantly, need to stir up racial tensions in order to remain a national party. That’s why I truly despise your ilk.

            1. I’m not anglo saxon so I don’t have white guilt, and the part of me that is anglo comes from my grandmother who’s a German WW2 refugee so no white guilt there either (i’m also part Jew so I don’t have WW2 German guilt either).

              Both major parties are fraudulent and shouldn’t exist. Both Republicans and Democrats spout the same “the other party needs corruption to exist” nonsense while refusing to look in the mirror. Who’s side were you on when Ron Paul schooled neocon Giuliani on foreign policy in that 2007 debate? If I had to guess you were on Giuliani’s side.

              Third parties and independents are the answer, not more regulations and red tape. People get what they vote for.

              1. So it’s “Idiot Guilt”, then, that forces you to produce such drivel?

      4. You just said fuck you to everyone who takes the small government position, ie no vote ID.

        I don’t see how it is un-libertarian to enforce the law on the books that says each person has to be registered to vote and can only vote once.

        If you think its un-libertarian to enforce a law, then I think what you really mean is that the law should be repealed.

        So, unless you are saying we shouldn’t concern ourselves with whether the person voting is eligible to do so or has voted more than once, I have a hard time seeing why you would oppose a requirement that this all be verified.

        1. Ding! We have a winner.

          This is my general position as well – “rule of law” is more important than Future Libertarian Awesomeness, and further the best way to build opposition to bad laws is to actually enforce them diligently; a bad law not enforced is one that stays on the books and gets enforced when The Man feels like it.

          I’d be fine with no checks on voting eligibility or any of the related laws in a libertarian state.

          But we have a giant, coercive state right now, and it would be nice to limit the franchise to, well, people actually eligible to exercise it, so long as such laws exist.

          Don’t like that? That’s cool. But push to change the law, rather than suggesting it just be ignored because you don’t like it – because ignoring laws you don’t like leads not to utopia, but to blackshirts.

          The idea (expressed below) that it somehow makes government illegitimate [as opposed to other first principles doing so] if anyone can’t vote for any reason, or if any restrictions like “prove you’re actually a citizen and over 18” exist, is at best not obvious.

      5. Actually, limiting the ability of people to take part in a government activity isn’t exactly a fuck you to small government.

        1. It isn’t? A government which does not have some measure of the consent of its governed strikes me as illegitimate in everything it does.

          1. Except “those who can demonstrate that they’re eligible to provide their consent” most certainly is a measure of consent of its governed.

            1. Sure, if limiting only to those who are eligible there is no problem, but if it further limits or prevents those who are eligible then there is a problem.

      6. Malarkey. Smaller government can not be achieved if big government voters are allowed to stuff the ballot box.

        1. How do you know who’s for big government or not?

          1. How do you know who’s for big government or not?

            If they have a “D” anywhere near their name.

      7. Uh, no. I’m very much for minimal government, but you can’t have a system of voting without a method to prevent fraud. Without it, the results of voting mean nothing. It’s also telling that cities like Chicago are well known for their number of dead people who vote, yet we keep hearing lies from those who politically agree with those who benefit from voter fraud that “there’s no such thing as voter fraud”.

        It’s really telling that Chapman is OK with showing ID / background checks / restrictions to purchase guns when the Second Amendment clearly says that the right to keep and bear arms “shall not be infringed”, yet he’s against showing a simple ID in order to vote. His reasoning is that “someone buying a gun could kill people”, yet he ignores that A) criminals still obtain guns so it’s a moot point and B) governments kill far more people each year than criminals.

        Chapman also said that it doesn’t matter if people commit voter fraud since it wouldn’t affect elections, so using his own reasoning there’s no problem with the extremely small minority who refuse to obtain an ID because their lack of votes wouldn’t affect elections. So which is it – do votes not matter and thus there’s no reason to stop voter fraud or are votes important and it’s a travesty to not let people vote who refuse to do such a trivial task as obtain a free ID issued by the state?

    2. SO – “the logix behind” requiring some sort of ID is to VERIFY THAT THE PERSON SEEKING TO VOTE ACTUALLY IS ELIGIBLE TO DO SO.

      Bing bing bing! We have a winner.

      “So, fuck you as usual, Chapman…”

      Seconded.

    3. My thoughts exactly. The entire article was an irrational straw man argument. Plus who cares if some lady needs to pay $200 to fix her birth certificate. She doesn’t need to vote to survive. If she thinks voting is so important then she’ll pay the $200. Anyone to Stupid or cheap to get an ID shouldn’t be voting.

  4. If a person forbidden to vote manages to cast a ballot by pretending to be someone else, by contrast, the election result will almost never be affected.

    Bullshit. If I vote for candidate A, and a person committing fraud votes candidate B, my vote is neutralized.

    1. Bullshit right back. Assuming randomness, they will cancel. If you assume fraud, that’s a different matter, but even more irrelevant, because it’s so much easier to commit fraud where the ballots are counted, and the campaign lies are the worst fraud of all.

      1. You’re full of it. Voting fraud is never random, so that blows your assumption into a zillion pieces.

      2. Nonsense. Voter fraud would tend to skew to the more dishonest politician for ovbivious reasons like a) They organize the fraud ala Acorn, b) Dishonest people are attracted to them. c) special interest parasites on the taxpayer how want a dishonest redistribution of spending and rule will vote for the dishonest politician.

    2. Bullshit on both. The only reason politicians care about this issue is because ID-less people tend to vote in one particular fashion. That fashion is easy to deduce from the two parties’ positions on the issue. Those positions, of course, should have no bearing on whether or not ID is a good idea.

      Chapman’s article does a good job of crtitiquing specific aspects of obtaining an ID, but doesn’t really defeat the concept of voter ID in principle.

      1. I was bullshitting the fraud argument, not the denial rationale. You are right that’s the main reason for politicians wanting voter id, but I wasn’t addressing that.

      2. Are you saying people too stupid and lazy to get an ID tend to vote democrat?

        1. BULLSHIT ON ALL OF IT!! Voting is bullshit

  5. Why are people who oppose the idea of proving who you say you are in order to vote so convinced that fraud isn’t a significant problem? If proving who you are isn’t required, the actual rate of fraud being perpetrated would obviously be impossible to ascertain. It’s anybody’s guess under the status quo. There are always close elections. Bush in 2000. Franken’s election to the Senate a few years ago. Even a tiny amount of fraud can have a major impact.

    1. Actually, if voter fraud was a significant problem it would be a national security issue, and the NSA would respond.

      Surely they’re tracking voters, right?

  6. Jesus. Let’s just wish fraud away, because the political parties are just so trustworthy.

    1. The point is these laws are not going to stop the kind of fraud that political parties are interested in, but they will stop some actual voters from voting.

      1. I don’t believe the former – the latter maybe. Care to elaborate?

        1. A political party would have to be crazy to try to rig an election by having people show up and pretend they are some other voter in the ward, because that voter may have already voted, and boom, you are caught. By far the better way to do it would be to have the election officials rig the vote in some way. And Voter ID laws do not touch that.

          In the cases that have gone to court often both sides will actually stipulate, or the court will find as a finding of fact, that there are indeed quite a few people under these proposals who would not have the requisite papers to get the requisite ID without some significant cost and effort.

          1. A political party would have to be crazy to try to rig an election by having people show up and pretend they are some other voter in the ward, because that voter may have already voted, and boom, you are caught.

            Nonsense. You just keep voters on the rolls who are dead or who have moved.

            1. Where do you get a reliable list of dead and moved voters?

              1. I’m not sure what you mean. Simply refusing to clean the voter rolls leaves dead and moved voters there, ready for fraud. You don’t need to “get a reliable list.”

                1. You would need a list of dead and moved persons to check against the list of voters, otherwise you could cast a vote for a living, nonmoved person.

                  1. Which happens. See my Twitchy link below.

                  2. “You would need a list of dead and moved persons to check against the list of voters, otherwise you could cast a vote for a living, nonmoved person.”

                    Have you ever talked to a person that’s worked at a polling place before? Because this happens repeatedly every election. Indeed, the people who work polling places routinely kick people out who have already voted that day.

              2. Ask Richard Daley.

              3. Political operatives that work in government. Ones you hired/appointed.

              4. Where do you get a reliable list of dead and moved voters?

                Chicago DNC Headquarters, of course!

      2. I just don’t buy it. IDs are required for any number of transactions, including government ones. It’s basic and opposition to it in voting has to be at least partially based in a desire to engage in fraud.

        1. Lots of people live for years without any ID. I work with a group of people who exemplify this. They had ID’s at one time. They got hired. They lost their ID somehow. Years have gone by, but they either don’t bank or the bank people know them, they are old enough to buy alcohol without being carded, etc. It is actually quite easy to make it without ID.

          1. Then don’t vote. It’s absurd to treat something that clearly should have minimum security with very little.

            1. Thanks for supporting my point infra.

              1. Um, no, I’m not. It’s not anti-libertarian to require some sort of authentication process. It doesn’t have to be a state ID (and, certainly, no one here is advocating a national ID), but it needs to be more than “I promise I’m not voting for the third time, an illegal alien, or whatever other fraudulent thing you suspect me of.”

                Private entities require ID all of the time, for a variety of transactions. This idea that voting doesn’t involve fraud but every other transaction where fraud can unjustly benefit someone does is simply nonsensical.

                1. Thank you…that’s argument number one that I trot out whenever someone accuses me of hypocrisy for being libertarian and supporting voter ID laws.

                  Not to mention that my personal suspicion is that voter fraud is an overwhelmingly Democrat institution…as their allegations of racism on that issue are far more vehement (and far less substantiated) than on other issues where they regularly accuse their opponents of racism.

              2. Are you stupid? He didn’t support your point in any way. His point was that ID should be required for obvious reasons he states. You then respond with a red herring because apparently you are intellectually dishonest or an idiot. He reiterates his point, plus adds a new one which is that if someone is to lazy or stupid to get an ID they shouldn’t vote. Voting also requires one to have an address, to register, to have transportation or accesss to mail. Should we get rid of all those requirements to just because some people don’t have them? Maybe we should stop turning away people who look the same as someone who just voted. After all not everybody looks different than the next guy and we might be preventing twins and triplets from voting.

          2. You pretty much need an id to cash a check anywhere, so….

            1. No, you don’t. I know my bank teller, and they cash my checks all the time without asking me for ID. They asked once, years ago, but they certainly stopped asking a while back.

              Besides, a lot of people got direct deposit back when they had their ID and first landed their job.

              1. you just proved my point.

                1. How do you think so?

                  1. I said:

                    You pretty much need an id to cash a check anywhere, so….

                    You said:

                    They asked once, years ago, but they certainly stopped asking a while back.

                    Besides, a lot of people got direct deposit back when they had their ID and first landed their job.

                    If you make any cash withdrawals you need an ID, if you make a deposit you need an ID. If you visit a bank your need and Id. I you Know your teller you don’t need an ID sure but do you personally know anyone who works the polls(That’s what she said).

                    1. I thought we were talking about whether you need an ID to get through normal, everyday life. My example about my bank was to that. Whether you need one at the polls is of course the debate at hand. I’m only replying to those who say we should require at the polls because everyone already has one and has to have one. They don’t, and they don’t.

                    2. You sure as hell can’t open a banking account, or travel within 100 miles of the border, or do any number of things without an ID.

                      The fact that some people choose to live lives without ID is fine. So what? If they want to vote, they still need to register, and I see nothing wrong with requiring them to get an ID.

                      As far as I know, every voter ID law contains provisions (which Chapman elides) allowing any voter to get a valid ID for voting without having to pay for it, if they can show need.

                    3. If you can point to a state with a recently adopted Voter ID law where the state waives the fees for the ID and the documentation needed to get said ID I would like to see it.

                    4. Sure. Here’s Texas.

                      http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/D…..tionID.htm

                      You will note the lack of any fee being charged for this ID.

                      I like the way you moved the goalposts on waiving the fees for the paper to prove you are eligible for the Voter ID.

                    5. “I like the way you moved the goalposts on waiving the fees for the paper to prove you are eligible for the Voter ID.”

                      It’s not a goalpost move, if you can not get the ID without the other documents it’s the goal itself.

                    6. Don’t forget to leave out the cost of bus fare to apply for the ID.

                      Talk about your barriers!

                      Nothing, ever, anywhere is every completely and totally free. If that’s your standard, then there is no way to meet it, and you might as well go to the point of saying that we should allow anyone to vote as many times as they want.

                    7. Nothing, anywhere, is totally free, so let’s just throw on as many more barriers as we can!

                    8. Straw man argument.

                    9. “you might as well go to the point of saying that we should allow anyone to vote as many times as they want.”

                      That is exactly where his argument leads.

              2. How the hell did you open a bank account without an ID??????

          3. lol unless you have to buy Sudafed.

            SLD applies here of course, but the idea that voter ID is an undue burden is laughable. The fucking statists have made ID mandatory for so many things at this point that it’s silly to claim that having one to vote is a hardship.

            1. “The fucking statists have made ID mandatory for so many things”

              Should we libertarians jump on that caboose because the Democrats won some elections? Because that is what this all about, voter ID laws became big among the GOP when Obama won. A funny named, furrin seeming guy won, so instead of looking at how their party might have issues it must have been corruption and fraud! The Democrats did the same thing when they lost elections (remember the crying over the hackable electronic voting machines in 2004?).

              1. That’s not what I said you disingenuous twat.

                You can make a principled argument, and libertarians do and should. But it’s simply bullshit to suggest that the overwhelming majority of adults do not have some kind of government issued ID card at this point.

                We are well and truly into the “papieren, bitte” era of America. The progtarded belief that you should have to show ID for everything except voting is hypocritical and based purely on their reliance on voter fraud to swing close elections. Such as Franken, or the WA governor’s race a few years back.

                1. “it’s simply bullshit to suggest that the overwhelming majority of adults do not have some kind of government issued ID card at this point.”

                  Like I said, whenever this goes to court the judges usually make a finding of fact about how many people do not, and it is pretty significant every time I’ve seen it. Take a look at the 5th Circuit’s recent ruling on the Texas law.

                2. good god almighty, it’s like PB has developed an altar ego to carry on with the libertarian purity testing.

                  Things like “vote early, vote often” don’t invent themselves. Neither do stories of the dead voting. For some reason, both are traceable back to a specific political party.

                  This notion that we treat boarding an airplane, buying liquor, checking out a library book as more sacrosanct than voting in nauseating.

                  1. “For some reason, both are traceable back to a specific political party.”

                    See, I think this is telling, this is what is behind the push: the need to fight the Democrats dirty election tricks.

                    I should also say, that of course there is a lot of documented history of both Democrats and Republicans engaging in voter fraud in the earlier times of our republic. Nucky Thompson was a Republican, remember.

                3. We are well and truly into the “papieren, bitte” era of America.

                  Since this is America and not Europe I would call it the “sus papeles, por favor” era.

              2. So, Bo can’t really challenge the opposition to fraud, so he imputes racism to those who disagree with him (while faking a redeck accent to boot). Yup, no reason whatsoever to think Bo’s a first class douche.

                1. Where is the racism imputed? I actually explicitly reject such a charge below.

                  And I’ve more than successfully challenged the opposition to fraud.

                  1. Where is the racism imputed?

                    A funny named, furrin seeming guy won…

                    Yup, no imputation of racism there.

                    1. I was thinking more xenophobia actually.

                    2. Well isn’t that special. It doesn’t make you one iota less of a douche. Supporters of voter ID have stated their motivations. That your first reaction is to ignore their own professd motives and ascribe something less worthwhile just demonstrates what I’ve said about you for a long time – you don’t really argue in good faith. You’re a troll.

                  2. And I’ve more than successfully challenged the opposition to fraud.

                    Only in your own demented mind, you bloody idiot.

              3. Should we libertarians jump on that caboose because the Democrats won some elections?

                Could you please stop saying ‘we’ libertarians? It really doesn’t make us all go ‘Well, Bo’s a libertarian, so we should just accept what he’s saying.”

              4. “voter ID laws became big among the GOP when Obama won.”

                Total and absolute bullshit. They’ve been pushing for that for as long as I’ve been alive. I could name example after ezample but need only list one, the 2002 Help America Vote Act. That’s years before Obama was elected. It’s clear that not only are you stupid but dishonest, and also to lazy to look shit up before spreading lies. No wonder you don’t want voter ID. You wouldn’t be abel to vote or commit voter fraud because only stupid lazy people can’t get IDs and crooks don’t like Voter ID for obvious reasons.

          4. So?

            They’re working adults.

            They can get ID if they want it.

            So they can get ID to vote – here, for instance, a non-DL state ID is maybe $30.

            You picked the least effective example possible for your disenfranchisement argument.

            (Further, I’ll add that I support giving poor people ID for free for the same reason.

            Voting is a civil right, and a fundamental one in a democratic society.

            But that doesn’t mean “we can’t require ID to prove eligibility” – it means ID should be easy to get and not burdensome.)

            1. reason confuses me sometimes. Voting is completely pointless, but proving you are you to vote is a horrific injustice that has disenfranchised too many people.

              1. You may have noticed that nobody here, save Bo and Tony, agrees with anything Chapman writes. It’s one of those impenetrable mysteries of life why Reason still publishes him.

        2. More licensing! Freedom and liberty!

        3. Not “buying it” shows how little you understand what it is like to be poor. I imagine you have never found yourself homeless, or elderly without proper id, or any of the other situations described in the article. If you don’t want poor people to vote, just say so.

          It’s disappointing to me how so many of the commenters here are passionate about our constitutional rights, except this one. Reason gets it right on this one.

          1. If you’ve made enough stupid decisions through life to end up poor, homeless, and without ID, I really don’t want you to vote.

  7. If a person forbidden to vote manages to cast a ballot by pretending to be someone else, by contrast, the election result will almost never be affected. Besides, the sort of fraud that an ID would prevent is exceedingly rare. The court in Wisconsin found the requirement would block vastly more legal voters than fraudulent ones.
    States have long had procedures that discourage fraud by impersonation without blocking legitimate voters from the polls. The stricter new requirements may sound reasonable, but they’re not reasonable for everyone?or reasonable for democracy.

    What type of fraud is the most prevalent? What procedures are you referring to? If you believe this, how is registration constitutional in general? Isn’t that a barrier? Do you understand your opponents positions at all?

  8. Oh, goodie, we’re doing the voter ID thing again.

    attested that they lacked the required ID and, in many cases, couldn’t easily get it.

    Utter bullshit. Idk about Wisconsin, but Virginia sent voter IDs to everyone that is registered to vote. On that note, I see no reason why you should not validate said registration by proving you are registered, voting in the district that you are supposed to and getting just that one ballot.

    1. Under the Help Americans Vote Act, there are 6 forms of ID such that any one of them has to be taken as sufficient to allow a new registered voter in a district to vote. It doesn’t need to be a photo ID, it can be a utility bill or bank statement; if it’s got the address of the registrant, you’re in.

      But as has been pointed out many times, the far greater problem is fraud or just plain neglect in registration records. We have a tough time getting enough signatures (as a percentage of voters enrolled in a party) to get candidates on the ballot because so many of the official records are out of date. They died or moved away years ago, so you can’t get their sigs, but they count toward the number you need.

  9. I like that Paul has come out and chided the fascination with Voter ID laws recently. That so many libertarians, the same people who rightly found REAL ID and other ‘papers please’ measures now want to push these laws is unfortunate. For some people libertarianism has come to mean anything that will hurt Democrats, and while one can sympathize with that view six years into Obama’s rule, it of course means much, much more than that.

    1. Proof of identity to vote in a public election — OK

      Proof of identity to get a job — bad.

      Is that too complex for you?

      1. Why would one be bad, another OK? I don’t want government to have give me permission and the OK before I get a job, but I do not think they should do the same before I cast my consent or not as to their ruling me. I’m their boss, where are their papers?

        1. It’s a fucking right v. a fucking privilege. That simple. You have a right to free association, including association in employment contexts. The government stepping in to require identification is violation of that right.

          You have no right to vote. Voting is a privilege set up by government to “throw you a bone.” (SLD’s apply) The government is in no way violating your rights by setting requirements to limit voting privileges. Otherwise felons couldn’t have their voting privileges taken away, children could vote, and you wouldn’t have to be a citizen to vote.

          1. Er, you do know you have a 2nd Amendment RKBA, but felons and children don’t, right? SCOTUS has long recognized a right to vote. There are more Amendments to the Constitution concerning that right than any other.

            1. Fine: you have the right to vote, once, assuming you are an eligible voter. How do you enforce that without IDs? You can’t. All you can do is wave your hands and claim that all parties cheat and it doesn’t really matter.

              1. People proved, and still do, that they are eligible voters all the time before and without these kinds of laws.

            2. Er, you do know you have a 2nd Amendment RKBA, but felons and children don’t, right?

              Yes, and Jews in Nazi Germany had that same exact inalienable right (unless you believe that rights are derived from a piece of paper), and the Nazis took those guns away. Did Jews simply not have a right to keep and bear arms?

              Rights are inalienable, and their source is not government. Voting is not a right.

              1. The Declaration of Independence would like a word with you.

                1. You mean the Declaration of Independence that the people didn’t vote on, that doesn’t contain the Bill of Rights and that isn’t our governing document?

      2. How about requiring proof of identity for neither?

    2. I don’t necessarily think presenting IDs is the best answer, but literally anything to mark you’ve voted once isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Anyway I feel like most of the fraud occurs when someone who was registered doesn’t show.

      1. I think you are right.

      2. “Anyway I feel like most of the fraud occurs when someone who was registered doesn’t show.”

        But how would you systematically be able to know who those people were? It would be a pretty fantastic gamble, unless you had some inside help, and if you have that, why commit vote fraud that way?

        1. because you look at the empty ballots and fill them out after the polls close. You don’t know who these people are until after the fact. How do you think dead people vote?

          1. “because you look at the empty ballots and fill them out after the polls close.”

            That requires the election officials to be in on it, voter ID does nothing for that.

            1. Who do you think works the polls? seriously, look at my OP:

              I don’t necessarily think presenting IDs is the best answer, but literally anything to mark you’ve voted once isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Anyway I feel like most of the fraud occurs when someone who was registered doesn’t show.

              1. So what do you think happens, when someone does not show the crooked poll worker goes and gets a stooge to come in and vote for that person? Why not just have the crooked poll person rig the results right there themselves.

                1. What?

                  when someone does not show the crooked poll worker goes and gets a stooge to come in and vote for that person?

                  this doesn’t happen as often as this:

                  Why not just have the crooked poll person rig the results right there themselves.

                  But they both occur, why not attempt to prevent both. What exactly is your argument?

                  1. My argument is that these laws will perhaps provide some benefit but also some costs. The costs are some legal voters who will be unable to get the required ID and vote.

                    If the benefits are small because the type of fraud it might (and I stress might) stop is small, that makes the case for the law less tenable.

                    1. I agree which is why Republican’s are only addressing half of the equation, because they engage in fraud to. I think that some form of ID or proof of who you are along with some additional check/safety measure such as attaching that proof to your ballot would be the best answer.

            2. It is very easy for even ordinary voters with no particular credentials at all to get a look at the sign-in book at the polling place. It does help a little if elections inspectors are in on it, but there are so many of them that that help is not hard to get, and it’s not really necessary anyway. In fact when you’re signing in, it’s practically impossible not to see several close to your name in alphabetic order.

            3. that’s exactly how LBJ got the to be the senate nominee in Texas in 1948.

              More recently, how about those polls in Philadelphia guarded by club wielding Black Panthers (the ones that Eric Holder dropped charges against). The rest of out state votes 55-45 Republican, then at 3 am the totals come in from Phiily, going 70-30 Democrat and outweighing the rest of the state. I’ll bet there were Dem poll workers up late, once they knew how many votes were needed, filling in the appropriate number of ballots in the names of people who didn’t show up, or had moved, or had died.

              I’ve lost count of how many statewide elections (senator, president) where I have watched a close election be trending Republican until after midnight, then the Democrat votes come rolling in. In Florida in 2000, Bush has a lead of 70k votes with only 100K left to count – and Gore got the votes he needed. How did that happen? To me that was more suspicious than the recount fiasco (let’s only recount counties where we had a lead)

              1. Elections in the USA are highly manipulated by a number of methods including gerrymandering, massively biased registration procedures, illegal “caging,” massively biased removals from voting rolls, “accidental” misdirection of voters, and massively biased allocation of and mode-setting of voting machines, among others.

        2. But how would you systematically be able to know who those people were?

          Derp derp derp. NSA, data mining, check the voter rolls against death certificates.

          had some inside help

          Like say from a federal bureaucracy which has been politicized?

          why commit vote fraud that way?

          Why not? Who’s going to catch you?

          1. You: Hi, I’m Tulpa-Virginian and I’m here to vote today.

            Official, looking at voter rolls: OK Mr. Tulpa, wait a minute, it shows here you have already voted today! I’m afraid I need you to step over here…

            1. Oh my god you’re adorable, you actually think election officials are honest, and not the very ones committing the fraud.

              god you’re such an Aspie retard.

              1. Again, if the election official is dishonest why in the world would you get a stooge to come vote for someone who may or may not have already been listed as voting that day?

                1. Have you seen the video of the guy asking Jim Moran’s son for tips on how to vote in someone else’s name in a Virginia election? Moran the younger tells him to bring a utility bill among other suggestions. Moran never suggests that it’s illegal or immoral.

              2. Oh my god you’re adorable, you actually think election officials are honest, and not the very ones committing the fraud.

                Of course they are the ones committing fraud. That is exactly why voter ID laws won’t help much. If it is the people in charge of checking IDs who are committing the fraud, why would you trust them not to lie about having checked IDs?

                1. This.

                2. Because it makes convincingly covering their fraud that much more difficult.

              3. That is a specious claim. Where’s your evidence? Many very good people work hard to make the elections work.

            2. Have you ever voted?

              1. Yes.

            3. “Official, looking at voter rolls: OK Mr. Tulpa, wait a minute, it shows here you have already voted today! I’m afraid I need you to step over here…”

              And then the person just leaves. Do you honestly think that poll workers attempt to arrest everyone who shows up again? It’s almost never prosecuted, unless they catch you after the fact.

              1. or the undercover video from New Hampshire, where he looked up obits of recently deceased people, then went to the polls and said “Do you have a John Smith?” “Why yes, Mr. Smith, here’s your ballot” “Is it possible for people to vote in the name of dead people?” “Oh no, we have safeguards to make sure that can’t happen”.

                I’m into genealogy and computer programming. I’ve written a script to download ALL the obits from my local newspaper. It’s was actually fairly easy. The only risk would be if there’s an honest poll worker who personally knew the deceased.

      3. Here’s the problem with “purple fingers”

        They do nothing to affect absentee ballot fraud. And I think that’s where most of this kind of fraud occurs, simply because you can only vote so many times in person on election day. For real industrial scale fraud, you need to either corrupt the polling places, or you need to submit volumes of absentee ballots.

        1. “They do nothing to affect absentee ballot fraud.”

          The same is true for most of these Voter ID laws.

          1. True enough. That just means that we need to change absentee ballot laws to require that they be picked up in person, after showing ID.

            I, for one, have no objection to requiring people to exert a slight bit of effort in casting their ballots.

            1. Aren’t absentee ballots supposed to be for people who are for some reason unable to go do things like pick up forms in person? If you can go pick up an absentee ballot, why couldn’t you just go to the poll and vote?

              1. Absentee ballots were originally only for those people that could prove they would be unable to get to the polls ON THE DAY OF THE ELECTION. Like being out of town on a trip. Now they are encouraged by the political parties to get participation from people that just can’t be bothered to go to the polls, because FYTW.

                1. There are lots of people who can’t get there at all, though. Deployed soldiers, ex-pats, hospitalized people.

                  1. You don’t have to show up to a physical location to get an absentee ballot. You just have to prove you can’t get to a ballot box on election day.

                    There are ways to make sure the old, the infirm, and the deployed can get absentee ballots.

                    But the problem is that it has become too easy to get an absentee ballot and way to easy to submitted fraudulent absentee ballots.

                  2. Soldiers: Easily handled through the military.

                    Ex pats: Easily handled by having them go to an embassy or consulate to get their ballot.

                    The disabled and immobile is a tougher one.

                    1. When I lived in Australia – in a major city – the nearest consulate was over 1,000 miles away.

                      So, not so easy.

                  3. All ballots are blank. It’s easy enough to provide blank ballot and pre-addressed envelopes to people pretty much anywhere in the world well before the time of an election.

                    The trick is to provide a secure means of submitting an absentee ballot which means authentication and non-repudiation of a sealed envelope (but the ballot remains anonymous).

            2. If the law says that a person must be a registered voter living in a given jurisdiction to be able to vote in the elections of that jurisdiction, then it is not irrational to require potential voters to prove registration and residency at the time of the election.

              I am personally OK with imposing ID requirements on voters even if it punishes the stupid and the lazy.

              1. “I am personally OK with imposing ID requirements on voters even if it punishes the stupid and the lazy.”

                Again, thanks for helping my point below.

                1. I’ll go beyond that. I’d gleefully impose any burden the prevents people from voting if they haven’t decided who to vote for 2 weeks before the election. These people are really too stupid to be allowed to vote.

                  1. For exactly the reasons you mention, it’s really amazing that anyone thinks mandatory voting is a good idea.

                2. Stupid and lazy get punished, Bo hardest hit.

              2. Even if it punishes the poor? Or are you equating poor with stupid and lazy?

        2. Gov of Washington & Al Franken, they both had car trunks full of uncounted ballot boxes that were “discovered”.

          But once we get into all electronic voting, how do we know that once we push the button that my vote is actually faithfully recorded? Like when the president of Honduras was impeached a couple years ago – he wanted to have an unconstitutional referendum on changing the constitution to eliminate term limits. Once he was removed from office they found the election results on his office computer – for an election that was never held.

    3. But is the “papers please” aspect anything other than a slippery slope argument? This is not the government butting in and asking for your papers while you’re freely traveling or freely associating. It’s not even the government requiring you to have a driver’s license when you’re driving on private property.

      Voting is an activity managed by the state, and an activity that no person is obliged to engage in. And as has been said, part of its duty in managing the ballot box is to ensure that only eligible voters vote. It’s not unreasonable to require proof of identification and eligibility, nor is it at all analogous to the state demanding ID in the pursuance of free activities (or obliging people to interact with the govt and show ID; e.g. establishing checkpoints).

      1. And as I’m talking to you, Bo, I trust you recognize that I’m only challenging the argument. I’m generally ambivalent about this issue – I don’t want people voting at all, so I won’t lose sleep if poor or elderly people out there are dissuaded from voting – but if asked to support a side I’d be against it. It will likely fail to prevent much fraud, but more important is that it gives politicians the grounds for taxpayer funded IDs or a national ID.

        Still, asking for ID before voting doesn’t strike me as unreasonable.

      2. “This is not the government butting in and asking for your papers while you’re freely traveling or freely associating.”

        I see it as yet another instance and area of the government demanding of me that I present them with papers to exercise my rights and privileges.

        1. I see it as yet another instance and area of the government demanding of me that I present them with papers to exercise my rights and privileges.

          I’m assuming that you oppose any kind of ID or other background check for gun purchases, then?

          And you oppose voter registration (which requires the presentation of papers)?

          1. The existence of one set of barriers seems to me to argue against adding another set, not for.

    4. For some people libertarianism has come to mean anything that will hurt Democrats, and while one can sympathize with that view six years into Obama’s rule, it of course means much, much more than that.

      No, actually for a much longer time, it’s meant only a little bit more than that. If you look for the things that hurt specifically Democrats (as opposed to everybody else), you get a damn good approximation of the opposite of the initial direction liberty needs to go in from here & now.

      Don’t take my word for it, just look at the analysis Don Ernsberger did 20 yrs. ago. He wasn’t expecting the outcome he found, so it’s not like any prejudice of his determined the outcome.

  10. If those like Chaman who wish to keep open an avenue of voter fraud would donate i/10th of the energy to helping those without to get IDs that they spend shrilling about voter suppression the “problem” would be solved.

    We have uncounted millions of people living in this country illegally and for that reason alone, if no other, we should require voter ID.

    There was recently an article about Cali governor Brown having to sell Californians that Obamacare was going to cost an additional 1.2 billion for Cali taxpayers alone.

    The article went on to say that there were 38 million potential voters but failed to mention there were only 6.3 million taxpayers among them.

    Another reason why voter ID should be a requirement to vote.

    1. “If those like Chaman who wish to keep open an avenue of voter fraud would donate i/10th of the energy to helping those without to get IDs that they spend shrilling about voter suppression the “problem” would be solved.”

      That cuts both ways. Supporters of Voter ID laws would be less open to attacks of voter suppression if they coupled their laws with some significant outreach to get proper ID to those who can not afford or reach them. But they usually don’t. And you can combine this with the fact that a lot of these Voter ID laws are part of more ‘comprehensive’ election ‘reforms’ which include measures like making it harder for third parties, like the LP, to get on the rolls, and making it harder for groups, like college kids, who are more likely to vote Libertarian than other groups, to vote.

      1. I think that pretty much everyone who is for Voter ID’s has literally said, that I have personally heard talk about the issu,e they would provide for those that couldn’t afford or reach one at some capacity. But maybe that’s just anecdotal.

        1. Actually, I have heard the opposite. The exchange usually goes like this:

          Supporter: Oh, these people can get IDs without much trouble. Everyone has one.

          Opponent: That’s not so, it can be difficult for some to navigate the time and expense of the bureaucracy.

          Supporter: Well, if it ain’t worth it to them then they should not be voting!

          After you have that last line it is kind of hard to argue you’re not at least partly motivated or at least ok with the fact that some votes are going to be ‘suppressed.’

          1. there is NO expense in many states. ID’s are issued for free, mostly because they’re needed for a host of things unrelated to voting.

            1. The IDS may be issued for free, but the documentation needed to get that ID usually is not. That is usually the biggest barrier, getting things like birth certificates and such.

              Have you ever lost your wallet and had to go through that process? I did once. It was a bear, and I’m a (just successfully completed!) 2L. Some poor, elderly shut in, good luck with that.

              1. poor, elderly shut-ins lose their wallets all the time, eh? Exception proves the rule.

                1. Poor, elderly people lose all kinds of things, all the time. Do you now know any poor, elderly shut ins?

                  1. the straws ask that you not grasp them so tightly. If a few outlier cases of a shut-in losing a wallet is your basis for opposing ID for voting, then it’s time to look for a new argument.

                    1. “If a few outlier cases of a shut-in losing a wallet”

                      As I have said repeatedly, in the court cases over this they actually find as a matter of fact how many people who are eligible voters do not have the requisite ID, and it is more than a ‘few outlier cases.’

                      Nice of you to have no concern over those few outlier cases though.

                    2. “As I have said repeatedly, in the court cases over this they actually find as a matter of fact how many people who are eligible voters do not have the requisite ID, and it is more than a ‘few outlier cases.'”

                      They do not find as a “fact” as you state.

                      Just think Bo, if you really cared you could have helped someone get an ID with all the time and energy you have spent here.

                  2. Thank you for this comment. I work with elderly people and it is clear that most commenters here don’t have an idea what it might be like to be elderly or poor or homeless. Those folks still have a right to vote.

              2. Wait, you carry your birth certificate in your wallet?

                1. I carried my Id and my SS card. They were lost. My parents could not find my birth certificate. It must be a common enough thing because the places I went to get all the records had a procedure laid out for it.

                  1. I recently got a birth certificate over the internet with no problem. I could have just as easily done it over the phone.

                    Even if it were an Obama phone !

                    Voters who care about voting can, and will, get an ID if they need one to vote.

          2. Thus demonstrating that if you let people redefine “suppression” to mean anything they don’t like then anything they don’t like will be suppression.

            By this logic, isn’t the basic requirement to register itself an act of “suppression”?

            1. I put the word ‘suppression’ in quotes for a reason. I’d prefer ‘barrier to entry’ or something.

              1. So, registration is a barrier to entry, no question about that. I guess we need to get rid of it?

              2. Having to be a citizen is a “barrier to entry” too. Are we gonna get rid of that requirement? Being a felon is a “barrier to entry” in some states. Being able to get your lazy fucking ass out of bed and down to the poll on time is a “barrier to entry.” Being literate enough to understand the instructions is a “barrier to entry.” God forbid you work all day, and don’t have time to get to the poll, that’s a pretty damn big “barrier to entry.” But no, we’re wheeling grandma off the cliff by requiring her to prove that she’s not voting for the 4th time today by simply showing some form of identification. That’s a bridge too far! She spent all day getting ready, getting wheeled out of the nursing home, arranging transportation, and waiting in line, but ID, that’s just mean!

                1. I like this logic that because there are already this or that barrier to entry we should support additional ones. I wonder where else we as libertarians could apply it?

                  1. Bo, that seems to be a ridiculous posture. This is such a trivial change to the current system, that acting as if this is creating a substantial barrier to entry, is a contrived concern.

                    You show a strong mood affiliation with Democrats and it’s highly likely that Democrats will be net losers in this equation. I suspect that this is what’s really driving your concern.

                    1. What do people think gov’t recognition of same sex marriage (or any marriage) is? It’s a record saying person A is married to person B. Can you be in favor of gov’t’s recording that, but not recording who an individual is?

                2. A couple months ago, I believe in NC, there was a rally against voter ID. Participants were asked to bring their ID to the rally to prove they were registered to attend.

      2. “Supporters of Voter ID laws would be less open to attacks of voter suppression if they coupled their laws with some significant outreach to get proper ID to those who can not afford them”

        HAHAHA uh no they wouldn’t. Remember, racist until proven democrat.

        1. I did not say anything about race, but keep fighting your own personal culture war.

          1. are you new? Jesus on a freaking biscuit; the chief argument from the Dems about voter ID is “racist!11!” For some reason, the left thinks blacks are incapable of getting IDs.

            1. Well, when a Dem brings up that view then use that response, but I am not talking about that.

          2. Oh you were only talking about yourself? If so, you shouldn’t have phrased it like you were speaking for everyone who attacks supporters of voter ID laws. Like wareagle said, the racism claim is constantly being trotted out by Dems…for everything, really, but especially voter ID.

            1. I guess it is brought up a lot for legal reasons: we have laws that allow for stricter scrutiny concerning laws that might have a disproportionate impact on races but not laws for the same thing base on income or education or whatever. I’m under no illusions that the Democrat party is taking any position on this (or anything, frankly) due to principle either.

              Black people being more likely to be poor and less educated I guess these laws would negatively impact more of them than others, but that’s hardly why I would oppose them.

      3. Texas has offered free IDs to those who claim hardship.

        If that’s not enough then fuck them.

        Just because you and they think we should hand deliver an ID to their front door is no reason that we should.

        If someone isn’t interested in voting enough to make sure they qualify to vote under the requirement of having an ID then they don’t want to vote.

        38 million possible voters in California voting about funding 1.2 trillion in additional Obamacare costs to be paid for by 6.3 million taxpayers.

        If you were one of the 6.3 million taxpayers, would you consider it fair to expect the voters to at least be eligible to vote ?

    2. Being required to show your papers is what a free society is all about isn’t it?

      1. And allowing anyone to cast as many votes as they possibly can is what democracy is all about, isn’t it?

        I remember when “one man, one vote” was the rallying cry of the Democrats. Whatever happened to that?

        1. I don’t believe in democracy and I don’t keep track of Democratic rallying cries because i’m not a Democratic. I voted for a Constitution Party candidate once for fuck sakes.

          1. *because i’m not a Democrat

  11. “Those activities, in any event, are not constitutionally guaranteed, which voting is.”

    Actually no, we do not have a constitutional right to vote.

  12. This article is just a hodgepodge of appeals to emotion and a straw man argument.

    “The logic behind laws requiring .. If you need to show an ID to board a plane.”

    The logic is that an ID is required to verify that you are who you say you are. The examples listed are merely examples of other areas where ID verification is required and that doing so is routine and doesn’t put any extraordinary demands on the entrants.

    “These attitudes reflect a failure to understand the lives of many Americans.”

    Except that vastly more Americans have IDs than don’t. The burden of proof is trivial. To claim it causes great hardship is clearly an exaggeration.

    “The government can impose regulations that affect constitutional rights. But it must have a good reason, and the rules can’t be an undue burden.”

    Voter identification is a good reason and the rules requiring an ID are not an undue burden.

  13. didn’t Chapman do an article on this very topic here two weeks ago or so? It’s like Shikha and immigration.

  14. I don’t think that the primary motivation for voter ID laws is voter suppression or racism, but I’m still not a big fan.

    I can’t say that I know for sure, but it seems to me that significant voter fraud requires people running the polls (i.e. the people who would check IDs) to be in on it making it easy to circumvent the ID requirement.

    It’s pretty low on my list of bad things, but on principle, I don’t like it. At least allow some other way to verify identity (which some states do. In NH you can sign an affidavit and have your picture taken.).

    1. I don’t think it’s a conspiracy against black Democrats just government overreach as usual. The overregulation of businesses is spilling over into politics.

    2. I think you and I are on the same page.

  15. How about this for a sort of silly solution? Just making voting anonymous and let anyone vote as many times as they want.

    I really think that the only value voting really provides is to inject enough randomness into the system to keep anyone from having too much control. It’s really not a good way to implement the will of the people (if you are into that sort of thing) when you only have 2 or 3 candidates to choose from.

    Really, the government should be small enough and have sufficiently limited powers that it doesn’t matter who gets elected.

    1. But that would cause a voting arms race with vast resources spent creating the ultimate vote-casting machine! Maybe it would save the economy?

      1. Just make it so one person can cast one vote at a time. If they want to vote more, they get at the back of the line and go again. That way you can also measure the enthusiasm of the votes (or how many people with nothing else to do each party can hire to go vote).

        It’s a very silly idea, but I like it. People take voting too seriously.

    2. it’s more difficult to have multiple IDs than it is to register under multiple names

  16. “If a person forbidden to vote manages to cast a ballot by pretending to be someone else, by contrast, the election result will almost never be affected.”

    Sure. And if a person kills and eats your grandmother, the nation will almost never be affected. That isn’t the point.

    We don’t have spare votes lying around. There’s just one franchise per citizen. Every fraudulent vote counted requires a legitimate vote is nullified. Disenfranchisement is disenfranchisement.

  17. Just brainstorming, but…why can’t the Board of Elections issue a photo ID, on request, when someone registers to vote and they don’t already have a usable ID? I assume that they had to provide evidence of identity in order to register…bingo, the BoE issues an ID good for voting purposes.

    No fuss, no muss.

    1. Because the entire point is to make it harder for people to vote.

      1. That was *so* responsive to the point I made!

        1. It was. The whole point of these schemes is to reduce voter turnout, which benefits Republicans. It can’t possibly be to prevent in-person voter fraud, because that is a nonexistent problem. If you want to reduce voter turnout then you make the system more cumbersome, not less. If you want to make it easy then just don’t require IDs at all, as has worked just fine forever.

          1. *Argument by Bullshitting*

            1. If you support these measures you are not a libertarian, you are GOP backwash, and you don’t get to call me a troll anymore, because not only are you a partisan, you’re lying about it. Either that or you’re an idiot who believes whatever the Republicans and their flapping puppets tell you, in which case, I’m sorry for what’s happened to you.

              1. *Argument by ad hominem*

              2. On the other hand, if you use a complete bullshit argument like Tony does here, you’re a total douche.

          2. “It can’t possibly be to prevent in-person voter fraud, because that is a nonexistent problem.”

            HaHaHaHaHa

            If you say so then it must be so.

            If it never happens then you should have no problem with States offering free IDs and then requiring them to vote ?

            1. As long as it does not have the effect of making it more difficult for legitimate voters to vote.

              Can someone explain why increasing unnecessary bureaucracy is the libertarian position? I mean fuck, you’re willing to tolerate huge increases in risk in all aspects of life. On top of that, you all are skeptical of democracy anyway, to put it mildly.

              The only apparent organizing principle among libertarian positions is that they support Republicans and everything they want. Because there’s fuck-all about liberty here.

              1. Tony, you are obviously a Democratic troll. Only Democrats believe that rights exist in isolation. Libertarians recognize that rights come with responsibilities. The other way I know your a Democrat is that you equate libertarianism with anarchy. Libertarians don’t object to laws. They object to unnecessary laws. Protecting the integrity of a national election is a valid reason to have a law.

  18. This is a good issue to separate the libertarians from the GOP talk radio sheep. Guess which ones I think support not creating unnecessary bureaucratic hurdles to exercising a basic right for the single purpose of benefiting a specific political party?

    1. During a Democratic Presidency, especially one as statist as Obama’s has been, in tone and in policy, a lot of conservatives travel with libertarians and a lot of libertarians become convinced that the GOP, as the lesser of two evils, should be supported by libertarians. Hence a lot of what you see on this site a lot. But really, a lot of that just attests to how awful, on a libertarian scale, Obama has been.

      1. Anyone who thinks the GOP is the lesser of two evils has been in a coma for some fraction of 40 years. That includes on big government and spending grounds. The only thing Republicans do is pretend to be for the things you guys are for. They’ve never, and I mean never, actually demonstrated it.

        1. Look, the trolls are jacking each other off.

    2. Like you had to look really hard for 1 of those, huh? Oh, you. Of course.

  19. Disclaimer – I like the idea of photo IDs, but I don’t think it’s the most urgent issue – as the Democrats argue, the fraudsters would find other methods. And the Democrats should know.

    1. Democratic spokesperson: “You see, voter IDs are useless because if I wanted to commit vote fraud – hypothetically – I would first check the records of infants who died 18 or more years ago and create a fake voter profile for them and issue it to one of my operatives, and the operative would accumulate enough identities to vote multiple times, and they’d have IDs because they registered fraudently!

      “Or I would also, hypothetically, simply stuff the ballot boxes. How would an ID requirement prevent *that*?”

  20. Chapman has a sliver of a good point with regard to the requirement of government-issued ID being bad. It should be any ID. There is also the point that bad voter rolls are worse than voter ID law. Other than that, there is no case against some kind of voter ID law. Ontario has had it for years without a problem.

    1. It should be any ID.

      Which is the functional equivalent of no ID. “Any ID” includes a crayon drawing of me on a Big Chief tablet, with my name under it.

      1. Stop that. You should know perfectly well that it means a Co-op ID or something like that.

  21. The major parties have major grassroots efforts to bus voters to precincts, etc. to up their turnout. The notion that they’d go to those extraordinary lengths but stop short of actually fudging ballots for registered voters who do not turn out is naive in the extreme. The Dem woman in Ohio who just got released early for voter fraud is an example. You have to be all kinds of stupid to believe that was an isolated event. She just got caught because she wasn’t very smart about it. And the point about her case is this: it was not a case of one fraudulent vote. It was one person casting, I believe, 6 total votes. Extrapolate from there and you get the potential for massive numbers of votes. And it doesn’t require more than one person in a key position at a polling location to produce a lot of these fraudulent votes. The argument that the parties would be foolish to risk it misses the point entirely. It’s not a top-down thing. It’s passionate believers on the ground here and there doing their own thing. It’s all the more likely in places where one-party rule prevails. Such monoliths breed rationalizations like the one that woman in Ohio used. She not only was unapologetic – she bragged and was proud of her fraud.

  22. The constitution requires voters to be citizens. If there’s no check for that, than you might as well remove the statement from the constitution.

  23. The “most vote fraud happens in another way” argument is bullshit. It’s like saying that most burglaries don’t happen via the bathroom window, so you don’t need to secure it. If you want a secure election system, you secure it at all levels. But of course many people don’t want a secure election system.

    1. But there are always tradeoffs with any policy. Voter ID probably will make it harder or impossible for some people to vote in some elections. Now, one might say that you shouldn’t vote if you can’t be bothered to get the ID, but at the moment, stupidity and laziness are not disqualifications for voting.

      I’m not trying to tell you that that is worse than the potential fraud with no ID requirement, but you have to take that into consideration. Let’s not go all proggie here and pretend that any well intentioned policies won’t have negative consequences.

      1. All you need is a way to implement voter ID that doesn’t make it harder or impossible for some legitimate voters to vote. It’s not hard.

        1. Say some grizzed mountain man emerges from the woods having been born and lived his life away from things like voting and towns and stuff. He has no birth certificate or SSN, but he is still a citizen with the legal right to vote. What about him?

          Yes, I am being a bit ridiculous. But there always could be people denied their right to vote by the ID requirement.

          As I’ve said, this is pretty low on my list of things to be upset about, and I think that most of the arguments against it are stupid, but I’ll maintain my principled stand against an absolute ID requirement.

          1. Then get him an ID. There are various ways to confirm who he is.

          2. He has no birth certificate or SSN, but he is still a citizen with the legal right to vote.

            With zero paperwork of any kind, I don’t think he’s even going to be able to register.

            That’s the issue that’s being skipped over here. You can’t register to vote without showing some proof of identity and residency. So how do you say “nobody should have to show ID to vote” without saying “nobody should have to register to vote”?

            1. But you an register in a neighborhood and then vote for decades there. These laws are talking about presenting the government approved ID every time you vote after that.

              1. Yeah…?

            2. No, you can register to vote by mail with no such proof at all. And there are many fraudulent registr’ns like that. The board of elections is supposed to act when they send notice of an election and it comes back “addressee unknown” (which it won’t as long as someone in the bldg. takes the mail), but often they don’t.

          3. I had to be out of town during the 2012 election. I didn’t have time to obtain an absentee ballot before leaving town. As a result, I was not able to vote. Was I denied my right to vote? Yes, but it was my fault because I wasn’t able to comply with the rules of the election. It was my responsibility and not the state’s to make sure I was able to vote. This happens to thousands of people every election. Voter ID is no different. If people want to vote, they will get the required ID. A few isolated cases should not be the basis for law.

  24. As for the “some people can’t get an ID” argument, then set up a system to help them get IDs, at no cost to them.

    In fact, that question is a good test of the nature of these objections: “If a voter ID requirement came with a means to provide free IDs to those who don’t have them, would you still object?” My guess is that those still objecting would be 1) libertarians who don’t like IDs on principle, but mostly 2) Democrats who worry they’ll lose more elections if fraud is reduced.

    1. If states pushing voter ID laws would do this, then I would agree those complaining have no leg to stand on.

      1. Georgia’s voter ID law did EXACTLY THAT and still the Democrats threw a hissy fit and the Obama Administration tried to have it struck down.

    2. ALL voter ID laws have provisions for free IDs.

      But that’s not enough, because the ID opponents complain that the documentation required for an ID are not free. But how far should this hand-holding go?? At some point you have to wean people off of breastfeeding. Everyone gets a free birth certificate when they are born. If they lose it, they usually have to pay a nominal fee for a new one. Big deal. If everything has to be free, then the govt needs to provide free transportation on election day as well.

      Chapman was misleading about something else. EVERYONE needs an ID eventually. EVERYONE. Without an ID, you can’t cash a paycheck, welfare check, unemployment check, or social security check. Or, alternatively, you can’t set up a bank account for direct deposit without an ID (despite what Chapman said in the article). Unless your own brother or sister works at the bank, they need to verify your identity.

    1. In the DOI case, of course, because either someone at the polls would have to recognize the person as not being who they voted in place of, or see the signature as not matching.

  25. Why can’t I use my facebook profile to vote?

  26. I say just restrict the vote to landowners over age 30. That will get rid of most of these problems.

    1. Would you care to narrow those down to cases of actual fraud, and then perhaps cases in which IDs would have made a difference? Because I’ve been through a few of the links but haven’t found one yet.

      Then compare those numbers to the numbers of disenfranchised by these laws, and tell me it’s an appropriate trade-off.

      1. Personally, I don’t really care about voter ID laws.

        However, I’ve been lectured by sweet, little birdies that the sanctity of our democratic process is the damn well most important thing we do. Also, that regulations always help the little people.

        Isn’t who can vote, and who can’t, too important to leave to a free market?

        Also, I remember a sweet, little birdie telling me that the libertarian strawman position was to remove laws so that law breakers don’t exist, and declare victory. Somehow, letting any person, any time, show up to a polling place and cast a vote with little or no checking and then declaring voter fraud to not exist seems strikingly similar.

        But, heck: if all these laws make voting too hard, why require people to register to vote in the first place? I say, you show up, you cast a vote. Show up as much as you like. If you care to vote that much, you’ve earned it.

        I seriously doubt our national trajectory would be effected much at all. Really.

        1. This is not that difficult.

          There is no evidence of in-person voter fraud being a problem warranting these “solutions.” Whatever I may believe, you are required to be for as little government intrusion as necessary between people and their basic rights. It’s not some fluke that I’m one of the few people here agreeing with the article. This happens to be the obviously correct position based on the principles you’re supposed to have.

          1. Tony:

            There is no evidence of in-person voter fraud being a problem warranting these “solutions.”

            And absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Tony, you should get this already: we don’t regulate based on needs. We regulate based on fears. And, by God, shouldn’t we have common sense regulations to make sure that our elections are just? For the kids.

            Whatever I may believe, you are required to be for as little government intrusion as necessary between people and their basic rights.

            Right, because libertarians are supposed to have consistent principles, whereas your only principle is believing that you can pull whatever inconsistent gibberish you wish to justify whatever you feel like.

            So, apparently, we need as much government intrusion as our democratic system calls for, except when it comes to regulating voting. And abortion. And gay marriage.

            Other than that, though, whatever comes out of democracy is all you need to know about what’s good and proper for basic human rights. Especially health care.

            But, not guns. And not speech.

            But definitely voting.

            Everyone should be free to cast whatever votes they want. However, we should probably place very strict limitations on what those people can read, hear, and see, right up to an election. Because, we can’t just have people voting with bad information, now, can we?

            Other than that, though, we need as free and open a democracy as we can get.

            Right.

  27. you are entirely wrong.

    The logic is that we see that massive numbers, 10’s if not 100’s of thousands, of people with the same name and dob are voting in multiple states.

    We see thousands of people who are dead still voting.

    We see many many districts all over the country where the number of registered voters exceeds the number of eligible voters.

    We see strong evidence of massive voter fraud … and voter ID solves most all of it. This is a strong case for voter ID.

    1. and voter ID solves most all of it

      I just don’t think that is entirely clear. Do we know that the illegitimate votes are being cast by people who walk in and misidentify themselves? It seems more likely to me that most of the dead people voting type stuff is done by crooked poll workers.

  28. Getting their ad views’ worth out of even Chapman articles. But I do think the comment thread’s longer this time.

  29. A popular argument for the postal office is that some people choose to live in isolated areas without internet access. So to cater to these individuals who either can’t or won’t adapt to modern times, do we have to spend millions of dollars to run the PO in an increasingly paperless world?

    Yes, voting is a right. But it’s one reserved for citizens, and the courts have generally recognized state’s right to verify voter identity. Theoretically, you can exist without photo IDs, proof of residency, birth certificate, passport. But 99% of us want to be able to drive, purchase alcohol, apply for financial aid, leave the country, etc. And many legal immigrants keep those documents CLOSE, because they need them to apply for citizenship.

    So the only question is, is obtaining a photo ID an undue burden? Not really. And “I actually have to spend money or visit government buildings” doesn’t count as one.

    If you were born in 1863 and your confederate birth certificate is invalid, or you just misplaced your document, then some exceptions can be made. But that’s an argument for government efficiency, not doing away with photo ID.

  30. So 300,000 adults in Wisconsin can’t buy Old Milwaukee??

    1. I think this is a travesty actually worth writing an editorial about.

      Instead, we have a lame-ass bit complaining that it’s too hard for people to prove their identity, so we should just leave the door wide open to election fraud.

      God forbid anybody should ask the people that elect our rulers to do anything to prove they exist, are eligible, and are voting only once.

  31. These are some really good points. The government should not be able to force you to get a drivers license or any other photo ID

    1. The government doesn’t force you to get a drivers license.

      If you want to drive you are required to get a drivers license to prove you are eligible to drive.

      If you want to vote you should have an ID to prove you are eligible to vote.

      It’s really simple

      1. Voting is like breathing, you get do do it because you are alive. It is not like eating, which you get to do because you have earned something to eat.

        1. No, you get to do it because you’re a citizen. Not everyone alive can vote in U.S. Elections.

          1. Tell that to Illinois politicians.

  32. Voter ID makes perfect sense for a democracy. It’s democratic government which doesn’t make any sense.

  33. “The logic behind laws requiring voters to provide a government-issued photo identification card is simple and seductive: ”

    The logic is: voting is participating in the coercive power of government, and like any exercise of coercive power, should be held to the agreed upon limits of that power in a verifiable way. Checks and balances. You know, like checking someone’s id so they can’t vote a 1000 times.

    Those activities, in any event, are not constitutionally guaranteed, which voting is.

    Another part of that guarantee is equal representation, so that you don’t get to vote 1000 times. If you want your hand on the gun of government, I insist that you don’t get any more fingers on that gun than I do, and that this is *verified*.

    Is this the way Reason is going now? Chapman will pick a topic to say something stupid about, and Reason will publish the same nonsense half a dozen times in rapid succession, until he finds the next hobby horse to ride?

    1. If the government didn’t have amassed so much coercive power (arguably unconstitutionally), then who votes would matter a great deal less.

      1. The mask slips here. Just come out and say it folks. You think some types of people should vote less, because they don’t tend to vote how you think they should. And voter ID laws suppress their votes, so that’s why it’s OK.

        Republicans of course have this figured out so surely you do too and aren’t actually for this policy on principle. That would be ridiculous.

        1. No, this is not what I think or what most people who support ID laws think. This is what Democrats want you to think because they have been the traditional beneficiary of voter fraud most of the time. The first Mayor Daley was notorious for voter fraud. It is not an accident that “Vote early, vote often” has become a part of our collective lexicon.

          Also, if Democrats believed voter ID laws would benefit them, it would not just be the law of the land, it would be a Constitutional amendment. Their objection is just transparent hypocrisy.

  34. I can’t imagine that it would be difficult for the State(s) to issue voter ID cards to the folks who, for whatever reason, don’t have another type of ID. Perhaps the author doesn’t like “His” and “Her” bathrooms either because some have ambiguous genitalia. One can always find a few outlier cases to argue against any sensible requirements aimed at preventing fraud.

    Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m perfectly OK with folks living their lives off the grid, but voter fraud by — primarily — the left is notorious. (See the wonderful article in the New Yorker about LBJ’s election to the US Senate to get the flavor of the whole subject.) Sometimes you just need to go to a little bit of trouble in order to exercise your rights. This editorial is frivolous.

  35. Here’s the thing, fellow libertarians: the requirement for an ID to vote stands the entire premise of our republic on its head. That premise is this: people are mostly pretty decent; by and large, individuals can be trusted to do the right thing. Our judicial system is absolutely based on that premise and our bill of rights codifies it. Further, it is a logical game of chicken and egg to start issuing ID’s: who is an acceptable arbiter of ID’s and where did they get that authority? The answer of course is, from the people who elected them (or elected those who set up the regulations to have someone give out ID’s). But, did those people who voted have ID’s? Generally, no.

    Like terrorists getting lucky some times, we are stronger to accept the small damage done by the evil, than to try to completely erradicate it.

  36. Idea is to prevent the poor (who are more likely to vote Democrat) from voting. Giving the Republicans a better chance of winning an election. Same basic principle that was used in the “South” to keep blacks from voting for much the same reasons. Discrimination based upon economic status instead of race.

    1. And the idea of Democrats is to protect the rights of illegal immigrants, dead people, and felons to vote.

    2. voting among minorities has increased in states that passed ID laws.

      You must be on Mars or something if you think the poor in this country doesn’t have a driver’s license.

  37. I think all of this voter id stuff is a red herring. It makes very little difference whether every single person votes or not, just like it makes very little difference whether a bunch of illegals vote or not.

    The real problem is that government has become so powerful and intrusive that people try to decide, through voting, things that should never be decided through voting in the first place. Do you really think anybody would care a great deal about who the president was if all he did was command the military at the direction of Congress and worried about keeping interstate commerce free and open?

  38. “It doesn’t matter who votes. What matters is who counts the votes. — Josef Stalin

  39. Sorry, I just totally disagree. Voting is different than your examples in that it is SUPPOSED to be limited to citizens of the United States AND limited to one vote per person. Obama, of course, is against both of these concepts and proved it by holding a “job” as a “community organizer” to perpetrate voting fraud. And, yes, it can and does matter.

  40. Sorry, not buying it. Rights come with responsibilities. The right to vote means following the rules associated with voting. Everyone has to register in order to vote. Everyone has to either show up at their appointed polling place during voting hours or obtain an absentee ballot. Proving you are who you say you are is no different. The Wisconsin law may be more restrictive than it needs to be, but the basic principle is still sound.

  41. Mr. Chapman…you should review Crawford vs Marion County and understand how wrong you are. The ‘right’ to vote is not explicitly in the Constitution. States grant the franchise to vote. The Constitutional amendments that speak of voting only apply when the states have granted that franchise. The state doesn’t have to show how widespread voter fraud is. The possibility of it happening is more than a compelling enough reason for the state to take measures to ensure the process is unpolluted.

  42. A few points.

    Voting is not a “natural” right. It is a privilege granted by the state. If there was no state, voting would be meaningless. The US Constitution does not limit the requirements to vote. It just makes it equally available based on race, sex, age, … Indeed, it allows limiting the vote to those 18 and older.

    If you do not have any way of determining an illegal vote and do not check for illegal votes, you can’t determine how much illegal voting is done. Hence, the claim that there is almost no illegal voting is invalid.

    If obtaining an ID is made inexpensive or free and easy enough to get then there is no real excuse for not getting one. Voting is a fundamental privilege of citizenship. If one doesn’t have to show some proof of citizenship to vote then citizenship is meaningless.

  43. A few points.

    Political choice is an illusion. Believing that your vote could make a difference is more than an illusion, it is pure folly. You go vote and nothing will change – Wars will continue, debt will increase, rights will continue to fade.
    All of this about voting i.d., illegal voting – it is a distraction from the real fact that you really have NO say about how you are ruled.
    There are small differences from one President to the next, but, for the most part, by the time anyone becomes President they owe so many powerful people that they are tightly controlled – Presidents have no real power; the real power is the people behind them with billions of dollars. The President is mostly a front man.
    Personally, I used to vote to “make a difference”, but I no longer agree to have anything to do with this criminal, illegal government – other than what I have to to keep the slavemaster off my back. The next time I get involved will be when people finally quit talking about voting and decide it really is time for real change. At some point our founders figured out that talking was NOT going to solve the problem, when are we going to do the same?

  44. If you were born here, it is easy enough to get ID. If you are here legally form another country, then you already have the paperwork to prove your identity and it is easy to get ID. ONLY if you are here illegally is it difficult to get ID or if you want to vote multiple times under different ID’s then it is very difficult to get legal ID.

    Anti-deportation nuts know this but they don’t care about the law.

  45. That is possibly the dumbest argument I’ve heard. 300,000 people statewide is .5 % of the state population and is negligible. I don’t care if they don’t drive and don’t fly. And there is always some sob story about this poor, poor pitiful person has a problem getting an ID. If you want to vote, get an ID. There is only one reason to not support this, and that is that you have no interest in fair elections. Without a valid accounting of the voting citizenry, elections are (and have been for some time) fraudulent.

  46. “300,000 eligible voters don’t have the documents needed for voting.” And how many of those 300,000 are like the corner cases that were mentioned in this article? 1% maybe? So 3,000 people out of million can’t vote for some off the reservation reason so that we can insure the integrity of our voting system. I’m good with that. Who wouldn’t be?

  47. just because a few losers can’t figure out a way to get a driver’s license or other state-issued ID, doesn’t mean it is widespread problem or that the law is flawed. The vast majority of people have no trouble getting an ID. Is it really too much to ask you to prove you are who you say you are when voting? No, it’s not. The people against these laws are more interested in perpetrating voter fraud to elect Democrats than they are in the integrity of the vote.

  48. It’s ludicrous that SOME people expect those who would choose the candidates and measures that govern the citizenry to bear a responsibility to prove they are who they say they are!

    I think we can all agree that voting should continue to operate on the honor system, right? No one is politically motivated enough to use deceptive tactics to win elections. I’m sure no one has ever tried to vote twice – they’ve already had their say, why would they? Surely no felon or non-citizen would ever attempt to vote, because they’re ineligible, and they know that – so why would they? No vote harvester would register phony identities to vote, and then have paid “volunteers” present that voter registration card or info at the polling place and vote as that fictitious person. Why go to that kind of trouble? And we all know dead people don’t vote – Duh!

    And since NO ONE would EVER attempt these things, why put ridiculous measures in place to ensure against them? It’s as absurd as locking your doors at night. Nobody wants your stuff, and nobody’s trying to steal votes either, dude. It’s all a bunch of right-wing fear mongering.

    And as this article proves, no one should be subjected to the outrageously-oppressive requirement to prove they are who they say they are. Least of all for something as silly as controlling the political process. We are on the honor system, people. And if we don’t have honor, then what do we have?

  49. Actually, there’s no reliable measure of the extent of vote fraud. Chicago is famous for the number of dead people who turn out to vote – but there’s no assurance that this doesn’t occur with regularity. If ID is not required, one group, the 20 million criminal aliens in America illegally, could tilt many elections. I don’t see other countries inviting criminals from other countries to come vote in their elections. Why should Americans risk criminals affecting our elections?

    By the same token, those living in the no-ID world should not be denied a vote that is their right to have. A cost-free means of self-identification should be developed. This may necessitate setting an earlier voting deadline for those with no ID, so that their right to vote can be verified before the votes are counted, but that should prove no barrier to those who really want to vote – and thereafter ID may be issued so in subsequent elections there are no delays.

    Reason’s push to accommodate the criminal invaders who have illegally crossed our borders, taken up residence, overloaded our social welfare programs, burdened our school, driven dozens of hospitals out of business and brought disease and crime to America, is well known. This article appears to be a part of Reason’s campaign to turn America over to the criminal aliens.

  50. fuck off back to the Tribune, Chapman.

  51. Those activities, in any event, are not constitutionally guaranteed, which voting is.

    There is no constitutional right to vote. Perhaps you should read the damn thing.

    If a person forbidden to vote manages to cast a ballot by pretending to be someone else, by contrast, the election result will almost never be affected.

    Almost never? So, you’re willing to accept a few fraudulent elections as long as these few losers aren’t “disenfranchised”?

    Besides, the sort of fraud that an ID would prevent is exceedingly rare.

    Citation?

    The court in Wisconsin found the requirement would block vastly more legal voters than fraudulent ones.

    Bullshit. The community organizers who pick these idiots up and drive them to the polls can simply make an extra trip to get them down to the DMV for a free state ID. They only have to do it once, not every election. I don’t want to hear this bullshit about birth certificates. A copy can be had for $30. If you can’t scrape that much money together, voter disenfranchisement isn’t your biggest problem.

  52. Weak Steve.

  53. So everyone can get a one time only pass on the ID, after which she’ll have a full year to get an ID. Surely that will satisfy all the hand wringing liberals so concerned about voter suppression, right? No! Because then, come the next year, we still won’t be able to identify the folks who got the pass on having an ID at the previous election.

    Solution: If you want to vote, get some type of ID from your local elections office. Surely these folks all file for and receive some type of welfare, right? Do they use an ID for that, or is it just given to them because they say, “Hey, I need some food stamps”?

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