Voter Identification Legislation Essay

Voter Identification Legislation Essay

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In the past decade, a total of 34 states have passed voter identification laws with the same guidelines from state to state. These laws require voters to show a proof of photo identification in order to be eligible to vote or receive a ballot at the voting polls. The initial purpose of the voter ID laws was to prevent voter fraud. However, the laws have made voting harder for some Americans, like minorities, women, students and elders by requiring a government issued photo ID.
Many people assume that everyone should have a government issued photo ID or a driver license. This concept is irrational and untrue because there are still people in this wealthy country who cannot afford a good meal. According to Abranmsky (2013), "The current Population Survey data show that 15 percent of Americans, roughly 46.5 million people, live at or below the government-defined poverty line—which, as most who work with the hungry, the homeless, the uninsured, and the underpaid or unemployed know, is itself an inadequate measure of poverty." If an individual can't afford to get a meal, then how can that person get an ID. This claim has provided an idea of the approximate number of people who are living below the poverty line. Those without IDs are mainly poor college students, low-income minorities and elders. In a study "Citizens Without Proof: A survey of Americans' Possession of Documentary" (2006), has shown that there was 11 percent of eligible American voters (more than 21 million citizens) who could be disqualified from voting because of lacking a proper photo ID (P.g.3). Even though the percent of people who live under the poverty line were higher than the people couldn't afford to get an ID, their rights to vote could drastically change an ...


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...uary 3). Court rejects Pennsylvania voter-ID law | MSNBC. Retrieved April 27, 2014, from http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/court-rejects-pennsylvania-voter-id-law
CITIZENS WITHOUT PROOF: A SURVEY OF AMERICANS’ POSSESSION OF DOCUMENTARY PROOF OF CITIZENSHIP AND PHOTO IDENTIFICATION. (2006, November). Retrieved from http://www.brennancenter.org/sites/default/files/legacy/d/download_file_39242.pdf
Harmon, K. (2009, May 29). Can You Lose Your Fingerprints? - Scientific American. Retrieved from http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/lose-your-fingerprints/
KHAN, N., & CARSON , C. (2012, August 12). Who Can Vote? - A News21 2012 National Project. Retrieved from http://votingrights.news21.com/article/election-fraud/
VOTING RIGHTS INSTITUTE (n.d.). The Real Cost of Voter Id Laws | Democrats.org. Retrieved from http://www.democrats.org/the-real-cost-of-photo-id-laws

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