• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Another Victory for Voter ID

    This morning, in a victory for election integrity, a Pennsylvania district court judge denied a preliminary injunction to stop Pennsylvania’s new voter ID law from going into effect.

    The law, passed in March 2012, minimally changes Pennsylvania’s election code to require citizens voting in person on Election Day to present photo identification. Acceptable forms of photo identification include IDs issued by the federal or state government, such as municipalities, accredited public or private schools, and care facilities. Citizens who cannot produce an approved form of ID may still cast a provisional ballot provided that the person delivers proof of identification within six days after the election. The law imposes a similar ID requirement for absentee ballots.

    Pennsylvania’s Department of Transportation is charged with issuing free identification cards. For those who cannot afford the minimal cost of supporting documentation, such as a birth certificate, their votes will still count if they sign an affirmation that they can’t afford the cost.

    The challengers claimed that many citizens will be disenfranchised or severely burdened by the photo ID requirement. At a trial in July, the challengers put forth testimony regarding the number of registered voters supposedly without certain types of photo ID (e.g., drivers licenses) as of June 2012, but others have noted that most of these voters have other approved IDs that they use to pass through airport security or get into government buildings.

    Judge Robert Simpson flatly rejected the challengers’ attempt to “inflate the numbers” of disenfranchised voters—which he estimated were “somewhat more than 1% and significantly less than 9%,” as claimed by the petitioners. He also found that the testimony of the petitioners’ expert was “not credible” and demonstrated bias.

    This outcome is similar to those in the unsuccessful lawsuits against the voter ID laws of Georgia and Indiana. In all three states, the courts threw out the opinions of the alleged experts hired by the plaintiffs as “not credible.”

    In a motion for a preliminary injunction, the challengers must demonstrate their likely success on the merits. The challengers failed to convince the judge that Pennsylvania’s law is facially unconstitutional (rather than as applied, which means that the law is unconstitutional only in its application to a particular person under particular circumstances). The challengers provided “speculation about hypothetical or imaginary cases,” which Judge Simpson correctly observed has “no place in a facial challenge.”

    Fraud in elections is a legitimate problem, and states from Colorado to Rhode Island have addressed it by passing laws that require identification at the polls. Voter ID laws strengthen enfranchisement of registered voters and ensure the integrity of elections, and now Pennsylvania joins the ranks of other states with common-sense voter ID laws that have withstood judicial scrutiny, such as Indiana, Arizona, and Georgia.

    Posted in Featured [slideshow_deploy]

    52 Responses to Another Victory for Voter ID

    1. electedface says:

      Voter ID is a violation of the 15th amendment. This is Voter Suppression at its finest.

      Watch the video and sign the petition to end Voter Suppression.

      • Bobbie says:

        voter fraud violates America and suppresses voter integrity! Where is protection from voter fraud? You're distorting the 15 amendment. No one is required a poll tax or any tax. Requirements to vote in national elections is lawful and what more practical requirement than the proof you are who you say you are? Convenient since everyone has one that needs one. Those who don't want to take the time to meet the one requirement should be respected their right not to vote.

        I don't see anywhere the tax payers are held accountable to fund the privilege to vote or accommodate the right to vote, anywhere? DISTURBING! Where do democrats have the right to take tax dollars to promote getting out the vote? opposition taking bipartisan money! It's not right! Outrageously underhanded! There's enough publicity! It's an extreme, criminal way of spending!

      • RCJH says:

        "The 15th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, ratified in 1870, prohibits federal or state governments from infringing on a citizen's right to vote 'on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude'."

        Explain how proving your identity infringes on any of that. Especially since the current voter ID states provide for FREE government-issued ID cards. So don't try to go there either.

      • Stirling says:

        and the liberal media propaganda campaign of the democratic party isn't voter supression? Give me a break.. If anyone who doesn't have an ID, was to be given an ID, would you have a problem with the ruling? Other countries require that you have ID (passport, etc) to vote.. why wouldn't you?

      • Lloyd Scallan says:

        electedface – I watched your video. What a race baiting pile of BS. Most of what is claimed is a total lie and distortion of the true facts. MLK marched for voter rights. But he also supported responsible voter should know who and why they vote. The right to vote carries responsibility. One of those responsibilities is for proper ID to discourage voter fraud. Every citizen must show proper ID in any function of society for the same reason, to prevent fraud. Your problem is that the Democrat Party must have fraud if it hopes for an Obama win. That's exactly why the left is so against preventing fraud.

      • Daniel says:

        And you sir are ignorant. Why must you present a photo ID to see a doctor-open a checking account or a bank account-to cash a check-to use a credit card in some places-to get a passport and so on, and yet you seemingly think this is wrong for you to vote? Are you serious? In Ohio we have documented proof that over 8000 new registrations to vote all came from one place, the regional office of the AFL/CIO in Cleveland ohio. Now unless this is a massive apartment building, THIS is voter fraud as they all listed this building as their home address! In Columbus Ohio, they had over 80,000 MORE voter registration applications then the ENTIRE POPULATION OF THE CITY AND ALL OF THEM WERE DEMOCRAT!!! And that includes every man woman and newborn and child! THAT sir is voter fraud. In Wisconsin they have documented proof that over 1500 votes were illegally cast for Al Franken by felons who had no right to vote. THAT sir is voter fraud. SO climb back off your soap box and stop sucking down the kool-aid of the liberals and join us in the real world.

      • Bryan says:

        Have you read the 15th amendment? This in no way violates any part of it.

      • Lawman says:

        ID is easy to get. The only reason to be against ID laws is so unqualified people can vote.

      • ted says:


      • FmrUSMCRnTX says:

        Patent NONSENSE! Voter ID does NOT in any way violate the 15th Amendment. This is a worn out & tired argument by the left which essentially supports voter fraud. Not so long ago, a young man (a caucasian as well) obtained a ballot claiming that he was the US Atty General Eric Holder….because no photo-id was required! And notwithstanding this, said Atty Gen. Eric Holder is AGAINST Voter ID….as apparently are you! Duh! When are you folks going to wake up and get a clue? We know why liberals oppose Voter ID laws…..so they can STEAL elections! Disgraceful….and this needs to be fixed. The US Supreme Court has ruled in favor of Voter Photo ID laws in a number of states. And the Judge in this case ruled correctly! Hopefully we here in TX will see a similar ruling very soon dismissing Eric Holder's corrupt DOJ & it's lawsuit against our Voter Photo ID law. As usual, liberals want to play by ONLY their radical rules. We've had it with that nonsense! As for the YouTube video cited, it's typical liberal hogwash! :(

      • Marcos says:

        Actually it doesn't. Try reading the ammendment.

      • David says:

        No, it is not a violation of the 15th amendment. The ID applies to all and has no basis on race or any other affiliation. In fact here is the 15th amendment.

        "The 15th Amendment to the Constitution granted African American men the right to vote by declaring that the "right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude."

      • ChuckL says:

        Wrong, The Fifteenth Amendment requires proof of Citizenship.

        This is easily accomplished by the presentation of a valid picture ID and a copy of your DD214, if you have served in the military. It may be more difficult if you have not served in the military, but the Fifteenth does not state that you may not be required to pay the full costs of providing you proof. It only makes the requirement that you, the voter, prove your citizenship.

      • Frank Andrews says:

        The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.

        How is this law a violation of the 15th?

      • Elliott L. Kipp says:

        I've been voting for almost 50 yrs. in the state of Louisiana & everytime, without fail, I was asked to produce a pictured ID. I have absolutely no problem with this request, and in fact I welcome it. I know some voters older than myself that haven't driven a car in yrs. & don't have picture IDs & in respect for their age, family members bring them to the polls with their signed utility bill, sign the registration book & have never been turned away. So, in answer to electedface, if you consider this voter suppression, I can only suggest that you must live in another country. And no, I do not need to see your video. God bless America! Elliott L. Kipp

      • Jack says:

        Totally disagree. Voter ID guards against fraud.
        We have required ID for much less important activities like cashing a check, we can have
        ID requirements for something as important as voting.

      • allMerican says:

        There is no way to make that argument based on any fact, period. The socialist democrats simply want a corrupt system, which allows them to use felons, dead people, and non-citizens to thwart the constitution. the electorate is not as stupid as you imagine – they can read.

      • Craig Walker says:

        Oh?……. Now after all of the legislation that has passed to skirt the constitution…… after claiming that the document is really just a piece of guidelines not law for governing…… after all the incredible grabs for power and government expansion the libs have pressed down the American public's throat ……… Now is when we quote the constitution……

        Let me offer a hand to hope on this side of the line where common sense stands.

      • Freedom ruth honor says:

        what will the DNC do for votes now? This suppresses voting by ILLEGALS and dead people..nothing more…. you need an ID to rent a DVD for God's sake. How difficult can it be.

      • Nathan says:

        Here, here… nrk

    2. Piquerish says:

      Holy chrome! A moment of plain old-fashioned common sense in my very own benighted blue-I'm-blue Commonwealth of Pennsylvania? Alors!

      • FmrUSMCRnTX says:

        Absolutely correct! Common sense…..that's something that liberals totally lack! They're purely into ideology and corruption…..stealing elections and fraudulent voter registrations as well as actual voter FRAUD is a long standing tradition with them. As one commentor posted on the YouTube video cited here on Heritage by the very same person who uploaded it that ridiculous video……"provide your information so we can find some homeless person to vote in place of you." That's what these goofy liberals support——->VOTER FRAUD! Time to stop this nonsense! People have to have photo ID's to drive, enter government buildings, even attend campaign events for "The Messiah"….but they should NOT be required to have a Photo ID to VOTE? Amazingly twisted and totally illogical! But then that's how liberals are, isn't it?

    3. freeandequalpa says:

      For anyone interested in a detailed summary of the Court's opinion:

    4. Lloyd Scallan says:

      Elizabeth – You really don't expect Holder to allow this ruling to stand? You forget, without voter fraud, Obama will loose in November resulting in Holder loosing his job. The entire Obama administration will not go down without using every illegal trick in the book.

    5. Stirling says:

      Thank you Pennsylvania for updating to the 21st century.. In this day and age where an ID is REQUIRED for everything to function in society, protecting the value of our most important government process (of elections) will help preserve our republic.

    6. John Detwiler says:

      But the law still give the illegal voter an out, all he/she has to do is to sign the conformation that they cannot afford a birth certificate. This provision should be stricken from the law.

    7. Rancraft says:

      Sounds about right to me. If you can't prove you are a citizen why should you get a vote?

    8. Jennie says:

      I live in Kentucky and have voted in every election since I was eighteen. I also work at the polls. Voters in Kentucky have to provide ID. I have never had a complaint against. They can use a drivers license, known to poll workers; etc.. Unfortunately, some "voters" would vote at several different polls if they could get away with it. It is NOT a violation of the fifteenth amendment. You might call it "election insurance" to keep the few voters honest who would try to "vote early and often." The 15th amendment gives you the right to vote and your local poll worker has the job to see that you only do it once per election.

    9. d rash says:

      So, what does this mean,,,,…. bottom line? It means that anyone can go vote 20 times, certifying 20 times that they cannot afford the supporting documentation. We always sem to have the right idea, then screw it up, with some outrageous loophole!

      • lizardmansc says:

        It seems to me that the article explained that. Those who are allowed to vote without I.D. must PROVE within six days, that they are who they say they are…. or the vote goes into file 13.

    10. gayle says:

      Fabulous! After all, one must show an ID to get a library card. Is this not of more importance? It just makes sense!

    11. Rudolph says:

      Section 1 of the 15 amendment states specific reasons for which the right to vote shall not be denied or abridged and proof of identification is not one of them. Participants in a class that I teach must show me a photo ID to verify that the person enrolled is actually taking the training to be certified. No one taking the class has ever told me that having a photo ID is a problem. There are persons who reside in the United States of America who do not have a legal right to vote. My right to vote is extremely important and a photo ID does not in any way hamper my right to vote. I wonder if some who "quote" constitutional rights have actually read the document and if the "names" that some use is intended to avoid being asked directly about comments made.

    12. art wissing says:

      if you need id to buy beer, get a library card or enter a courthouse or rent a car or buy a plane ticket ,where is the hardship? just a way to rig elections of the highest office;;;; we should be only citizens get to vote in our country…..

    13. Freedom_road says:

      Anyone that is against basic I’d for voting is either benefiting from fraud currently or hopes to in the future!! ! Especially when just about anything in your adult life already requires i.d. Like cashing a check!!! You bet if they were handing out $100 dollar bills across town these same people would have no problem producing i.d. and finding a way to get there! Participating in our election process does require effort and is a priveledge if you don’t even try to do the basics maybe you don’t deserve to vote….

    14. David says:

      You need ID for healthcare
      You need ID to drive
      You need ID to take a book from the library
      You need ID to go to school
      You need ID for insurance
      You need ID to buy beer and cigarettes
      You need ID to go into most bars
      You need ID for welfare and food stamps. The poor have no problem acquiring those.
      Everyone has a SS ID

      Why should voting be any different?

      An ID to vote helps to ensure fair elections by reducing voter fraud which is rampant. There is no requirement for that ID other then being a legal citizen who is not a felon.

      You'll notice the left never mentions why it would be a hardship to get a voter ID just that it would be for the poor and minorities. I was at the DMV a few weeks ago believe me the poor and minorities have no problem getting a government ID. The poor have more time and ability then you think to go to a government office.

      The left if trying to suppress legal voters who vote against them by trying to enable those who are not supposed to vote. You know felons, dead people, illegals, ect. As if getting a government ID is so hard. The poor have no problem getting ID for welfare and food stamps so please.

      • sora says:

        The great listing where ID are need to apply. However, to those who do not have one, and why not solve it all for one so that every one could be on board with the 21st century people. How do you solve the problems that are existing?
        A lot of the problems are usually bring up when and during the Election day, and when the election have gone, it concerning is still there such as illegals case and so on.

      • Nathan says:

        Why should voting be any different?

        Because there is no requirement in the Constitution!

    15. O2BMe says:

      It's about time! Voter fraud is well documented and been used by both political parties. It's a great step toward honest elections.

    16. historianMI says:

      It is lead-pipe obvious that this uproar about voter ID is about illegal voting being made much more difficult for prospective illegal voters. It is, perhaps, interesting that it is the Democrats who are raising the uproar, and it is the Democrats who have been caught in schemes to allow ineligible persons, including illegal aliens, to vote—-for Democrat candidates. Hmmmm…..

    17. Friday says:

      Until they get their nationwide illegal alien amnesty, voter fraud is the best they can do.

    18. Jeanne Stotler says:

      You need a Photo ID to get on a plane, a cruise ship, in a goverment building and a scillion other things. Schools require visitors to have one, teachers, nurses and doctors all have phote ID"s at work. I am getting sick and tired of the rhetoric, "they live to far, tey are too poor, and all the other BS. If you lve in the country how do you get to a store, church, etc?? If you say drive then you have a license. Too expensive, how do you ge food stamps, medicaid, they require ID. Doctors taking Medicare require Medicare card, and A PHOTO ID pluss your supp. Ins. if you have it. Stop the lies, enforce common sense laws to give us honest elections.

    19. Jan says:

      THANK GOD A judge who has a brain and not worried about his wallet
      .'Seriously if people are to stupid to have never gotten a photo id do we want them voting anyway?? what a joke- u cant do anything without some kind of ID What a joke and waste of taxpayer money… But what else can we expect from Obama's administration… just a way to get illegals to vote… very transparent!!

    20. Bobbie says:

      Requiring voter id protects integrity. Without it the door to fraud is open, always. what kind of people are anyone in this country, want an election of the highest office in the world, open to fraud? People have a right to do lots of things that call for a legal id but poo poo to the national election process? These people are criminal. We're not kindergärtners kids! This isn't suppose to be the world's playpen! We're in danger! All voters are adults! Lets grow up and follow this effortless requirement if we want to vote!!!

    21. BloodBornRight says:

      This is nothiong but adding ipn to racial intentions for the right votes to the Republicans who are the leaders of racism. The "land of the free" has neve been for the freed rightous blood born minorities in America. It is a suppression tactic. Pennsylvania is a Republican state to begin with. There never will be righteous for those who are born legal in the United States.

    22. Nathan says:

      There are still people, born in the USA, who do not have a birth certificate or other "proof" of citizenship. Never been out of the country or lived anywhere else, always voted, but have no "proof". I think just the opposite should be in force, make the government prove I am not a citizen.

      Had to "prove" my residence when renewing my drivers license after 50+ years of having the same license with a six digit number.

      A DD214 is not proof of citizenship just military service. Anyone legally on US soil can join the military if they meet the requirements of language, health, fitness, etc.

      If there are cases of multiple registrations from one address, etc. where is the prosecution?

      I have lived overseas for many years where you always had to carry your "papers." I don't think Americans should have to. It is just more government in our face enforcing rather than governing.

      • Bobbie says:

        the first time I registered to vote, I needed an ID. There was no exception. For 5 years after that we had to show our ID'S. We've lived in the same house for over 15 years and as long as the paperwork lined up we didn't have to show an ID. Today they say that people eligible to vote won't be if they have to get an ID? Well, without one leaves them ineligible. Why are people discriminated against for following the required eligibility, while government makes access and accommodations for anyone else at the expense of the country, while doors of opportunity to fraud and corrupt build around the process? I thought we all follow equal rules? One rule applied to all to protect integrity, otherwise the vote is fraud. This world is filled with people that hate, spread it around the world and use the government to fulfill their personal resentment.

        Integrity in the election process can eliminate that ignorant, dangerous governing and it's pompous disposition.

        Why are we disrespected to the level of children and taken advantage of for political and religious gain? If people really want to vote, they'll pull up their pants and follow the rule contrary to the election process today. Responsible with the adherence of common ethical principle.

    23. ash says:

      I would say the 15th amendment REQUIRES ID to vote. It says:

      "Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude."

      It says that a CITIZEN shall not be denied the right to vote. How do you establish a person't citizenship? In nearly all countries in the world, you need to carry papers showing who you are. Many governments can legally ask anyone for their papers at any time. This is how they show they are citizens, or have the right to be in the country, in the case of a tourist, foreign worker, etc. The US is one of the only countries not to require its citizens to carry ID papers at all times.

      That said, the 15th amendment requires that the person be a citizen. The way to verify that is with an ID.

      On the other hand, the Obama campaign is trying to block active military from voting. Why aren't the liberals complaining about that?

    24. Tony Bunn says:

      As a bi-racial American conservative with some African American blood in me I am offended at this effort to suppress the African American vote. The RIGHT to vote is a right not a privilege such as driving, flying, and drinking. And nowhere in our Constitution or the Voting Rights Act does it say that photo ID is required to vote. The photo ID tactic, along with other tactics such as limited voting hours in urban communities, is shameful to say the least. We should be finding ways for more of our citizens to vote not trying to prevent people from voting. If we are going to defeat Obama lets do it fairly and not be sneaky and underhanded about it.

      • Bobbie says:

        of course you would be offended, that's the way democrats work but still up to you! Voting is a privilege such as driving, flying and drinking or your right would be a mandate. It doesn't say fraud is required in the Constitution, not sure about the voting rights act especially if democrats are behind it. The photo ID isn't a tactic. It promotes integrity in the process and eliminates alot of ways to fraud and the greater potential. The more exceptions the government makes the wider the door to fraud. And since it's a law we all follow equally it shouldn't be taken the negative way you take it. Use it as a challenge not a shame. Nothing sneaky or underhanded about it. It's a grown up, adult way that all who want to vote will want the integrity that goes with it.

    25. Bridger Fellow says:

      Voter ID is NOT suppression of someone elses ability to vote. It is protection for my valid vote which could be negated due to a fraudulent ballot. It is suppression of my vote that we are trying to protect against and that is a very real problem! I demand protection for my vote and voter ID is a good first step. The Constitution grants the right to vote. It is up to the individual to execute that right no matter what his or her circumstances are. BO has tried to suppress overseas military votes. That is blatant voter suppression. The Communists in our country are using any means possible to suppress our valid votes to push their ideology.

    26. BMiller says:

      To allow them to sign a statement of being to poor to afford an ID that we are willing to give them ID card. There is only one reason they would not possess the Birth Certificate, Drivers license, DD214 would be that they are not citizens as all these are given to us at no expense; all they need do is provide the information necessary to be found in our records, it is here they must plead poverty for a free copy of the documents. Anyone this old should have alll manner of records to prove themselves, anyone claiming they don't have it are suspect and odds are they are not citizens.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.