Saturday, July 07, 2012

Activists Should Assume Voter ID Laws Will Pass

I'm pretty sure I've commented on this before, but (surprise) nobody was paying attention. Even if you believe that voter ID laws are entirely misplaced, that voter fraud has virtually no relevance in any given election, and that voter ID laws are driven by partisan politicians wanting to suppress voter turnout by the other side, you should assume that those laws will pass. Sure, work against them, but work very hard to make sure that the voters likely to be affected by the laws obtain acceptable ID's.
What the law really does is move the field timeline up dramatically, she said. Her group is setting aside many of its normal activities like voter education and is instead scrambling to formulate a plan to get voters without ID into the system with enough time left for them to vote....

Winters set the window to get an ID at “four to six weeks” and said that most of the group’s efforts to find voters without IDs and get them IDs “will have to be done before mid-September.” She said the timeline makes the challenge of getting people ID’d “especially challenging.”
This issue is not new. The national trend is not new. The requirements imposed by voter ID laws are not surprising. Start with the assumption that your state will pass voter ID laws and work hard to get valid ID's into the hands of voters. Most people will benefit from having a valid ID that they can use in other contexts, so even if your state doesn't pass a voter ID law you're doing some good. And if it does, you won't be caught flat-footed.

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