PA voter ID battle not over


Pennsylvania legislators on Wednesday pushed through a bill requiring voters to show photo identification at the polls. Gov. Tom Corbett quickly signed the bill into law, and said it sets a “simple and clear standard to protect the integrity of our elections.”

Yes, integrity. Everybody knows this sneaky corporate stooge, this governor who is despised in all parts of the state not dominated by crackers, signed the bill to block as many Democrats as possible from voting, and that the bill was part of a voter suppression campaign fueled by rich Republicans and aimed at Republican-governed states.

On the bright side, passage of the bill was only Round One in the battle over voter rights in PA. From Reuters:

Pennsylvania joined several Republican-governed states, including Texas, Kansas and Wisconsin, that have adopted stricter voter identification laws, arguing they were needed to prevent ballot box fraud. Supporters say the laws are no different from needing identification to board an airplane or obtain a library card.

But some civil rights groups say such laws discriminate against the poor who may not be able to pay fees for copies of legal documents such as birth certificates, and that they could suppress minority votes. Democrats say voter identification measures are aimed at squeezing out university students and senior citizens who tend to vote for Democrats…

Other states have encountered setbacks trying to impose voter identification requirements. A judge issued an injunction earlier this week against Wisconsin’s law, and the U.S. Justice Department blocked a new voter identification law in Texas.

The Justice Department, which also blocked a voter identification law in South Carolina from taking effect, said the Texas law could harm Hispanic voters who lack identification documents.

“Our legal team is currently mapping a strategy for overturning this voter suppression bill,” ACLU of Pennsylvania Executive Director Reggie Shuford said in a statement…

Footnote: It’s interesting that the proudly penny-pinching Corbett eagerly backed a scheme that would cost the state so much money:

The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center estimated the legislation would cost $11 million. In order to withstand legal challenges, the state must provide photo IDs for free, notify and educate voters about the new voting restrictions, hire more election staff, and purchase additional photo ID equipment.

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