I'm concerned about the ability of rural anyone to be able to get a free ID and vote. A huge portion of those are poor, and many of them vote Democrat, whether they're white, black, or Hispanic. By making it difficult for them to vote, it helps lock in Republican majorities.Deacon wrote:I do find it interesting that the concern seems to be for hermit undocumented hispanics, disregarding the quite large population of impoverished white people all over the state of Texas. If the concern is truly about poverty, not voting demographics, then I'm not sure why you wouldn't be equally concerned about the ability of rural trailer trash to get a free ID and vote.
While I don't see a notable problem with voter fraud now, that's not to say that it can't happen. Certainly, voter fraud has been a problem in the past, with allegations of it leading to the election of Chicago Mayor Richard Daley in the 1960s and JFK to the White House. Modern systems that mandate reporting of identities of the deceased to voter registrars have dramatically reduced the opportunity for such fraud. The ability of people to register to vote upon getting a driver's license if they're a citizen (which has to be proven via birth certificate, passport, or other means) has increased the number of people who require an ID to vote.NorthernComfort wrote:And there have been times in my life where I didn't have valid ID and wasn't able to get one due to lack of documents at hand. So the penalty for my hectic youth should be being denied the right to vote? I'd love to see somebody say that to my face.
But yes, under the laws that I'd like to see in place, you would have been denied the ability to vote. I'd like to see a federal hardship exemption for key documents such as birth certificates that, with the help of a notary, could be gotten for the cost of a stamp (and the notary, some of which offer free services to the poor). I mentioned above that I believe some mobility of officials authorized to verify voter registration documents would be a strong safety net against those who simply wouldn't have access. There would be cost, but it would also strengthen the voting process overall by ensuring that those who want and are qualified to vote are able to do so.
Mandatory availability of early voting should also occur. Even though most states have laws requiring companies to provide unpaid time off to vote, this still isn't always practical. Someone may not have the means to make it to a polling station 20+ miles away in some remote parts of Texas on voting day, but either through absentee ballots or by having polling stations open on multiple days, opportunities should be there to accommodate varying schedules. Pinning people to one specific day (selected historically because it wasn't the Sabbath, because travel by farmers to and from the distant polling stations could take a day in each direction, and because market day was on Wednesday) isn't terribly fair and has become a general nuisance even to those who do want to vote.