Voter ID

Today, 30 states require voters to present identification to vote in federal, state and local elections. Many Americans do not have the necessary identification that these laws require, and face barriers to voting as a result. Research shows that more than 21 million Americans do not have government-issued photo identification; a disproportionate number of these Americans are low-income, racial and ethnic minorities, and elderly. Voter ID laws have the potential to deny the right to vote to thousands of registered voters who do not have, and, in many instances, cannot obtain the limited identification states accept for voting. Many of these Americans cannot afford to pay for the required documents needed to secure a government-issued photo ID. As such, these laws impede access to the polls and are at odds with the fundamental right to vote. Learn more >>

Wichita Blues: Kansas Mandates Photo ID For Its Voters

By Jon Sherman, Voting Rights Project at 4:12pm
Kansas took a giant leap backwards this week by enacting one of the harshest voter ID laws in the country. Gov. Sam Brownback signed a bill into law Monday that will require voters to present photo ID at the polls as well as proof of citizenship in order to register. Kansas has joined a small group of outliers in passing such a retrograde law. Thirty-two state legislatures have introduced similar photo ID bills this year in what appears to be a nationwide coordinated effort to erect new barriers to voting. Only two other states in the union—Indiana and Georgia—refuse to hand a regular ballot to a voter who lacks photo ID without exception or alternative.
Voter ID Trial Day 12: Closing Arguments

Voter ID Trial Day 12: Closing Arguments

By Sara Mullen, ACLU of Pennsylvania at 10:23am

Yesterday was the twelfth and final day of the voter ID trial. In front of a full courtroom, which included Secretary of State Carol Aichele, attorneys for both sides presented their final arguments to Judge McGinley.

Jennifer Clarke, executive…

Voter ID Trial Day 10: Controversy Continues as Courtroom Closed to Public

Voter ID Trial Day 10: Controversy Continues as Courtroom Closed to Public

By Sara Mullen, ACLU of Pennsylvania at 11:27am

The tenth day of the voter ID trial kicked off with a frequent flier on the witness stand, Jonathan Marks, the Department of State's Commissioner for the Bureau of Commissions, Elections and Legislations, who has testified on four of the 10 days of…

This Week in Civil Liberties (5/4/2012)

This Week in Civil Liberties (5/4/2012)

By Rekha Arulanantham, ACLU at 4:41pm

What surveillance tool used by law enforcement could lead to nightmarish privacy infringement?

This week, the White House confirmed the existence of what program that has been kept secret by the CIA?

“Liking” on what social…

Keeping Ohio’s Souls at the Polls: Sen. Durbin Holds Field Hearing on Ohio Voting Law

Keeping Ohio’s Souls at the Polls: Sen. Durbin Holds Field Hearing on Ohio Voting Law

By Deborah J. Vagins, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Mike Brickner, ACLU of Ohio at 11:30am

On Monday, May 7, the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights will hold a field hearing in Cleveland, Ohio to examine the impact of Ohio’s new voting law, HB 194.

Let's March On: Protecting the Right to Vote in 2012

Let's March On: Protecting the Right to Vote in 2012

By Laura W. Murphy, Director, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 12:33pm

Today marks the 47th anniversary of the fateful march from Selma to Montgomery, which began with the horrors of Bloody Sunday, and concluded with a rally and speech by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., only days after President Lyndon B. Johnson submitted…

So You Think You Can Vote?

So You Think You Can Vote?

By Deborah J. Vagins, ACLU Washington Legislative Office & Georgeanne M. Usova, Washington Legislative Office at 10:35am

This Election Day, we are faced with a dramatic rollback of the right to vote.

Ohioans Rise Up to Stop Voter Suppression Bill

Ohioans Rise Up to Stop Voter Suppression Bill

By Mike Brickner, ACLU of Ohio at 11:00am

Pundits, politicians, and publicists all agree: Ohio is crucial to any national election. And this year, Ohio is just one of many states that has had to grapple with legislators’ attempts to restrict voting rights. In 2011, state legislatures…

Voter ID Trial Day 11: Closing Arguments Delayed as Dispute over Data Continued

Voter ID Trial Day 11: Closing Arguments Delayed as Dispute over Data Continued

By Sara Mullen, ACLU of Pennsylvania at 11:35am

The eleventh day of the voter ID trial proved to be an interesting mixture of boredom and drama. After a long trial, everyone involved was looking forward to closing arguments today. Instead, Judge McGinley once again closed the courtroom to everyone…

Voter ID Trial Day 7: Real Voters, Real Barriers

Voter ID Trial Day 7: Real Voters, Real Barriers

By Sara Mullen, ACLU of Pennsylvania at 10:26am

Cross-posted from ACLU of Pennsylvania blog

Attorneys for the plaintiffs concluded their case today with video depositions of three elderly long-time voters, two of whom do not have valid ID and face significant challenges to getting to PennDOT…

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