Rhode Island Governor Signs Voter ID Into Law; Cites Minority Support
On Tuesday, Independent Governor Lincoln Chaffee signed a
voter ID bill
into law. The bill was passed with overwhelming support by both houses of the
Rhode Island legislature, which are controlled by Democrats.
The most interesting part about this voter ID bill is the
support it received from minority communities. In a press release citing his
support for the voter ID law, Governor Chaffee said:
As the General Assembly debated legislation requiring Rhode
Island voters to present valid identification at the polls, I met with a number
of experts on both sides to discuss this complex issue. Notably, I spoke with
representatives of our state’s minority communities, and I found their concerns
about voter fraud and their support for this bill particularly compelling.
Additionally, Harold Metts, the sponsor of the bill in the
Rhode Island Senate said, “As
a minority citizen and a senior citizen I would not support anything that I
thought would present obstacles or limit protections”
The Rhode Island voter ID bill, which was passed by a
Democratic legislature, signed by an Independent Governor, and supported by
minority communities, thwarts attempts by Democrats to say voter ID bills are
being passed by Republicans to suppress minority turnout. Democrats should be
more concerned about the fairness and integrity of elections than hurling
unfounded accusations of voter suppression.