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Voter ID Laws. What Took So Long?
I'm surprised that only now, voter identification laws are making news and amazed of the swirling controversy over these new laws. A valid ID to vote is just plain common sense. I remember many years ago when I first started voting. I would wait with my driver's license in hand waiting for my turn to vote. I was sure I would have to show some identification before I was allowed to vote. I was amazed to learn that no ID was required. I thought at the time how strange it was. Anyone could vote without proving who they were or even if they were eligible to vote.
People such as myself, that want a nationwide voter ID system have been called racist and are just trying to bring Jim Crow laws back. The fact is, the the vast majority of people that support voter ID laws do so with no malice and are not trying to prevent anyone from voting. Again these laws are just common sense.
Consider this fact. There are between 12 to 30 million illegal residents in the United States. I'm not insinuating that this group is causing voter fraud issues but but I would have to guess that out of these millions there has to be at least a few thousand voting, especially as immigration issues are coming to the forefront. I was going to give examples of voter fraud but decided against doing so, as my reasoning for voter ID laws are not so much to prevent voter fraud (though of course, that would be a major benefit) but more along the lines of personal responsibility.
Why would a person need an ID to get an hotel room, but one is not needed to vote for a candidate that will govern and pass laws if elected?
Sure, the right to vote is a constitutional right and the right to vote comes with responsibility. Is it really too much to ask an individual to present a legal ID?
People take for granted how easy it is to vote in the United States. We saw the danger voters went through in Iraq and Afghanistan. More recently the “Arab Spring” showed us people were willing to be killed for the right to vote.
There is one group of Americans, in fact they our most recent Americans, naturalized citizens, that would not hesitate to take any additional steps, such as getting a piece of paper for the right to vote. They have not become complacent as most Americans have become regarding the right to vote.
Every state that has passed voter ID laws will issue a free voter ID to someone that can't afford to pay. Yes, I do understand that some hardcore homeless people (those that have been homeless for years and/or have mental issues) may have trouble providing proper identification to get a legal ID. I don't want to sound callous and I'm sure I will be taken to task for saying this, but how many of those type of people actually would vote? They are just struggling to survive day to day. Of course they do have a constitutional right to vote.
I'm unsure the type of help social services can provide for these type of people to get a legal voter ID. My opinion though, these laws would effect very few homeless people that would actually want to vote but couldn't prove their identity to get a voter ID. Of course, anyone that would want to vote should get all the help possible from state authorities to get a voter ID.
I do see a benefit though for the majority of homeless people and other segments of society that would otherwise not vote. Many states that have passed Voter ID laws including mine, Indiana, actually saw voter turnout increase not decrease. I attribute that to the fact of increased publicity surrounding the new laws.
There were massive drives by different political groups and social services to get people to realize they needed to get a voter ID to vote. I think because of these actions people that wouldn't have voted in the past became aware of not exercising their constitutional right to vote and decided they should use that right.
No system is perfect but Mexico's National ID system seems worth taking a look at. Mexican's cannot vote, board a airplane, or open a bank account without one. They are given free to each individual from the government and Mexican's say you couldn't live in Mexico without one. Of course the ACLU in the United States says a system such as this in the United States would be an invasion of Privacy. Really? How so? A national ID to prove your really you would be an infringement on your privacy? How ACLU. This great article from USA Today explains the Mexican National ID program.
My Other Hubs On Political Social Issues
- Raising The Retirement Age Should Not Be An Option
Why the retirement age should not be rasied and how other countries choose a retirement age. Social security is also taking in more money now then it pays out.
- A Unique Method To Fix Social Security
Ho to fix social security to a modified privatization plan with greater benefits for the individual and little cost to the government.
- Why this Republican Thinks Unions Are Still Relevant
Why the economy won't recover unless big business shares profits and why unions are still relevant.