Civitas President Francis De Luca and the Heritage Foundation’s Hans von Spakovsky demolished myths about voter ID at a discussion today.
BTW, here’s a good Hans von Spakovsky has a good piece on the issue here.
The first speaker: Keesha Gaskins, of Brennan Center for Justice at NYU.
She notes that strict photo ID laws have drawn lawsuits.
Comment: That’s because opponents sue! “Your Honor, have pity on my for murdering my parents –I’m an orphan!”
The speaker also objects to the cost of free voter ID.
Comment: Hey, if people don’t have ID, they can’t access social services. If liberals want to help the poor, they would support this plan to give people free ID!
Francis De Luca is up, to discuss the need for ID, polling, and Georgia’s experience.
Once NC was rural, and election judges knew the voters on sight. That is no longer the case. Voters can use any site in a county. One-Stop Voting and Same Day Registration have rendered obsolete the ability of poll workers to monitor fraud.
Moreover, the state has thrown other safeguards overboard, with elections bureaucrats overlooking many safeguards. For instance, there just isn’t enough time to verify addresses in many cases. Thus different kinds of voters are treated differently.
“Requiring a government issued ID before voting would ensure that all voters are treated the same,” he said.
“Only two percent of registered voters consistently say they lack ID,” he said.
Here is a Civitas press release on the recent polling.
We must not let legitimate votes be cancelled out by fraudulent votes, he said.
The conclusion: By helping the needy get ID, we help them get into the mainstream of society — if we really want to help them.
Bob Hall of Democracy NC testifies. He talks about poor voter participation in the 20th century.
Note: We are now 13 percent of the way into the 21st century.
He says vote fraud hasn’t been documented.
A response: until you ID voters, you can’t tell. If you take radar guns away from the highway patrol, you might claim there’s no more speeding on the interstates.
Allison Riggs of the Southern Coalition for Social Justice. (Read Hayek’s The Fatal Conceit on misuse of “social.”)
She is quoting a study comparing a “no match” list. But it’s a faulty study, as Hans von Spakovsky said at CLC.
She talks about the difficulties in getting a photo ID. To repeat: anyone who is so poor and helpless that he/she does not have photo ID cannot take advantage of the social safety net. Liberals should want to help these people get ID, and should devote their resources to helping.
Unless, as Francis De Luca suggested, liberals are only interested in poor people on election day.
Voter fraud is not significant in this state, she said.
Unless (1) we can’t measure it and (2) until we have an Al Franken situation in which a few hundred votes can swing a vital election.
She says turning away one legitimate voter isn’t worth it. Except no legit voter will be turned away! At most they will file provisional ballots! And if the law keeps a thousand phony votes off the ballot?
Hans van Spakovsky: “This is not Jim Crow,” he said. “And it’s a disservice” to those who fought for real civil rights.
For example, the voter ID law in Rhode Island was sponsored by an African-American Democrat, and so on.
The Supreme Court: “voter fraud is real” and it could change an election.
“It’s not true” that ID will suppress votes. Consider a new study: turnout went down from 2008 to 2012, but in Georgia (with photo ID) black vote went down much less than in other states.
Consider Indiana, which also has photo ID, turnout in the primary quadrupled after photo ID went in. “That was the largest increase in turnout in any state” in the 2008 primary. And in 2012 black voters were the key to the Senate race.
The claim that hundreds of thousands don’t have ID is grossly flawed. In comparing voter list to DMV list includes inactive voters — i.e., people who have moved, etc., who couldn’t verify addresses anyway.
And NC officials knew about the dead voters on the comparison list!
Nor does NC participate in a program with other states to compare voter lists, so thousands of people who have moved are on the list.
He lists other problems with the study. It includes people whose licenses were revoked or expired, so they don’t “have a license”, but obviously have resources to get one.
Also, it’s only exact matches. Say it has “Hans von Spakovsky” on the voter list, or “Hans A. von Spakovsky” on the drivers list — and they say this shows he doesn’t have ID!
In Georgia, in 2012, only about three thousand applied for free ID. In Kansas, only 120 people applied for free ID.
The complaint: But voting is a fundamental civil right!
Supreme Court says marriage is a basic right — and you need a photo ID to get a marriage license!
To get NC social benefits, you have to go through a process that is much stricter than the proposed law.
And this is true compared to other nations, including Mexico and Canada.
He notes that Mexican voters need photo ID and get a thumbprint. Read more here.