As midterm elections arrive in just a couple weeks, the Supreme Court has upheld a voter ID law in Texas that requires voters to present one of seven types of identification at the ballot box. The law had been challenged by Attorney General, Eric Holder. Proponents of the law say that it is a popular measure in line with practices that serve the state’s interest of protecting the integrity of elections, whereas critics attack it because they believe it will disenfranchise approximately 600,000 Texans who do not have one of the required ID cards and are mostly African American or Hispanic. No explanation came with the Supreme Court’s majority decision, although it is known that Justices Ginsburg, Sotomayor, and Kagan dissented.
The order comes in the midst of a larger battle over similar laws in various states. Within the last month, the Court let North Carolina terminate same-day voter registration and Ohio curtail the availability of early voting, although it blocked a recently enacted law in Wisconsin as early-voting had already commenced. Soon, voter ID laws in several states will get their first, large-scale test.
Do you think that these voter ID laws are unfair? Are the laws addressing real cases of voter fraud? How do you think these laws will shape the outcomes of the election?
TODAY is the deadline for voters to register to vote in the November 4th election. Registration forms can be completed online at www.lavote.net.
Registration status can also be verified at the site. Voter registration forms are available at libraries, post offices and many government offices and can be dropped off at the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder's headquarters at 12400 Imperial Highway in Norwalk. For any issues with voting, call 866-OURVOTE or 888-VeYVota (Spanish).
Registration events will be held at UCLA and Cal State Los Angeles from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Hans A. von Spakovsky, Senior Legal Fellow and Manager of the Election Law Reform Initiative at The Heritage Foundation - a think tank described as advocating conservative public policies.
Myrna Pérez, Deputy Director of the Brennan Center's Democracy Program and lead attorney for several of the plaintiffs in the case, including the Texas NAACP and the Mexican-American Legislative Caucus.