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Virginia’s New Photo ID Voting Requirement

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Here’s an article that provides a summary of the new law.  Key points include:

  • It does not go into effect until July 2014, so photo IDs are not required for the 2013 Governor and other races.
  • The Department of Justice must approve the requirement, and legal challenges are likely.
  • A valid photo ID would include a Virginia driver’s license, a U.S. passport or any other photo ID issued by the United States, Virginia or one of its political subdivisions, a student ID issued by any institute of higher learning in Virginia or any employee identification card.
  • Voter registration offices are supposed to issue free voter IDs.
  • Governor McDonnell has directed the State Board of Elections to implement voter outreach effortts, here.

The article does not stress that the photo ID requirement is completely unnecessary because there are virtually no instances of voter ID fraud, it will cost a bunch of money,  it is unfair to urban/elderly/young voters who lack driver’s licenses, and it will do nothing (but exacerbate) our biggest election problem – mutli-hour waits in line that discourage voting.  This article, however, does.