What’s the big controversy surrounding voter ID? You need an ID for plenty of things other than voting, like going to the doctor, seeing an R-rated movie, cashing a check, buying alcohol and a whole laundry list of other things.
The liberal argument against voter ID is that it’ll disenfranchise voters, though they don’t seem concerned about ID disenfranchising adults from being able to see R-rated movies, purchasing alcohol, etc.
That aside, evidence of “disenfranchisement” is lacking. Guy Benson and Mary Katherine Ham have an excellent section on voter ID laws in their book, “End of Discussion,” in which they note, “since Georgia’s ID measure went into effect, minority turnout markedly increased in successive election cycles — including the 2010 midterm elections.” They continue, quoting from an article in the Atlanta-Journal Constitution that found, “turnout among black and Hispanic voters increased from 2006-2010, dramatically outpacing population growth for those groups over the same period.”
So concerns over “voter suppression” are nonsense. Could it be they’re just a cop-out to neglect the fact that voter fraud disproportionately benefits Democrats? I think that’s more likely.
Look at the polls over any political issue today, and you’ll see Americans divided 50/50, plus or minus a few percentage points on one side. There’s an exception to this divisiveness when it comes to voter ID, ironically. As Breitbart reports: The latest Gallup poll shows 80 percent of all voters, and 77 percent of nonwhite voters, support requiring photo identification in order to cast a ballot.“Though many of the arguments for early voting and against voter ID laws frequently cite minorities’ voting access, nonwhites’ views of the two policies don’t differ markedly from those of whites,” Gallup states. White and nonwhite voters also strongly support early voting, 80 percent and 77 percent respectively. This seems to contradict the Democrats’ narrative there’s racism lurking at every polling station. Hillary Clinton herself stated that requiring voters to show the same ID they need to pick up prescriptions, board a flight, drive, apply for social safety net programs, purchase alcohol or cigarettes, open a bank account, or book at hotel room was a “blast from the Jim Crow past.”
Ninety-five percent of Republicans and 83 percent of independents also support photo ID requirements, with 63 percent of Democrats joining them. “In sum, Americans want easier processes for registering to vote and casting their ballots, as well as stronger checks against fraud,” Gallup concluded.
The prospect of widespread voter fraud has become a serious public concern in the months leading up to the 2016 election, especially for Republican voters. Fifty-two percent told pollsters that voter fraud was a “major problem,” with a quarter of Democrats agreeing.
If Democrats want to claim to be the party of the people, they should give the people what they want — and they want voter ID.
[Note: This post was authored by Matt Palumbo. Follow him on Twitter @MattPalumbo12]