New York Democratic Rep. Jerrold Nadler, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, told The Daily Caller that laws requiring voters to present photo identification are part of a “deliberate plot by conservatives and Republicans to suppress votes” that would be cast by minorities, the elderly and young people.
TheDC asked Nadler on Monday why states should not require voters to show photo ID at the polls.
“It doesn’t have to be photo ID. You get Social Security with Social Security cards and, by the way, plenty of voter IDs — you have a photo ID issued by a state university as a student or as a teacher, and those — in a lot of states, those aren’t valid. And there’s no valid reason why those shouldn’t be valid for voting purposes,” Nadler told TheDC before attending a forum on voter ID laws on Capitol Hill.
“People generally have voter IDs because they drive cars, but lots of people don’t drive cars,” he explained.
“A lot of these states that are passing these laws are making it very difficult to get the underlying documents, so it will take you a lot of time; it will cost you a lot of money to get it. And that’s putting a poll tax, either in time or in money, or both, on the right to vote. And that’s wrong.”
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Georgia, Indiana, Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, Idaho, South Dakota and Hawaii currently require voters to present photo ID at the polls. In Michigan, voters can sign an affidavit instead of presenting a photo ID. Kansas, Tennessee and Wisconsin have passed photo ID laws that will take effect in 2012. Rhode Island will adopt a photo ID law on Jan. 1, 2014.
“The evidence is that this will eliminate about 5 million voters,” said Nadler. “We don’t have 5 million cases of voter fraud. You don’t have 50 cases of voter fraud in the country of the kind of voter fraud that an ID card might deal with.”