Public Support for Voter ID at 70%

Published Wed, Dec 21 2011 10:31 AM

What do Americans think about voter ID today?  Well, Rasmussen Reports asked this question, and here’s what they found:  70% believe voters should be required to show photo identification before being allowed to cast their ballot.  

This is not the first survey that demonstrates the widespread public support for voter ID this year.  In May of this year, a Star Tribune Minnesota Poll found that 80% favored a photo ID requirement.  Also, the numbers were comparable back in June in a similar Rasmussen Report poll.

So why support these laws?  We heard a lot of reasons from supporters this week.  Senator John Cornyn recently wrote, “I support voter-ID laws, which are reasonable, constitutional, and necessary.”  RNC Chair Reince Priebus stated, “Bipartisan efforts at the state level to require identification to cast a ballot are commonsense, widely supported and have been upheld in court.”

But Republicans are not the only ones who support these laws. In October, former Congressman Artur Davis (D-AL) wrote an opinion piece in The Montgomery Advertiser saying, “I've changed my mind on voter ID laws – I think Alabama did the right thing in passing one – and I wish I had gotten it right when I was in political office.” Rhode Island State Senator Harold Metts (D-Providence) said, “As a minority citizen and a senior citizen, I would not support anything that I thought would present obstacles or limit protections.” Texas State Rep. Joe Pickett (D-El Paso) said, “If I really, truly thought that this would disenfranchise somebody, I would've voted against it. In these days and times, it's just not the case.”  

But if you asked the radical left why there is support for voter ID, you would hear a different story.  Some have said that voter ID laws are comparable to Jim Crow, a poll tax, the Ku Klux Klan, and torturing and killing children.  They assert that there is some ulterior motive to block access to the polls of certain voters.  Well, the American people don’t agree with this.  Rasmussen Reports found that 69% say that voter ID laws are not discriminatory. 

Such statements are a tactic of the left to generate support for unpopular initiatives.  These are emotional arguments that make Americans angry.  As Rhode Island State Representative Jon Brien (D-Woonsocket) explained, “Those who are opposed to voter ID never let the facts get in the way of a really good emotional argument.”  But with politics, we should be reasonable and practical.  We shouldn’t be swayed by the “emotional arguments” about voter ID laws.  When we step back and recognize what is going on here, there can be a serious discussion about what is good for our elections and our country. 

State legislatures across the country have asked the question this year whether they should pass voter ID laws.  Reasonable legislators talked to their constituents and found out what this week’s poll confirms:  most think there should be voter ID.  And that’s the reason voter ID laws were passed in so many state legislatures. 

The left should stop the name calling.  They should stop the political tactics.  And they should listen to what the people really want.

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