DoJ rejects SC voter ID law
To no one's surprise, the Department of Justice has rejected South Carolina's new voter ID law, calling it "discriminatory."
Justice Department lawyers, facing intense pressure from civil rights groups to act against the new laws, are still reviewing Texas's statute.
In its first decision on the laws, Justice's Civil Rights Division said South Carolina's statute is discriminatory because its registered minority voters are nearly 20 percent more likely than whites to lack a state-issued photo ID. Under the 1965 Voting Rights Act, South Carolina is one of a number of states that are required to receive federal "pre-clearance" on voting changes to ensure that they don't hurt minorities' political power.
"The absolute number of minority citizens whose exercise of the franchise could be adversely affected by the proposed requirements runs into the tens of thousands," Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez said in a letter to South Carolina officials.
South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) called the decision "outrageous" and said she plans to seek "every possible option to get this terrible, clearly political decision overturned so we can protect the integrity of our electoral process and our 10th Amendment rights."
Governor Haley called the DoJ action "outrageous" and I don't see any way a rational person could disagree. While minorities don't have state issued ID's at the same level as whites, the new ID law makes it ridiculously easy and cheap to get one.
South Carolina's law also required the state to determine how many voters lack state-issued IDs so that the Election Commission can work to make sure they know of law changes. The Department of Motor Vehicles will issue free state photo identification cards to those voters.
"Minority registered voters were nearly 20 percent more likely to lack DMV-issued ID than white registered voters, and thus to be effectively disenfranchised," Perez wrote, noting that the numbers could be even higher since the data submitted by the state doesn't include inactive voters.
How can a voter be "disenfranchised" if the state is willing to give the voter the required ID free of charge?
What the government is saying to minority voters by rejecting this ID law is that they are incapable of acting like adults and must be treated like children. How much of an extra "burden" is it to visit a government office to pick up a free ID? Of course the liberals are concerned that many won't make the trip largely because they don't care enough about voting to put forth the effort. But how many of those folks would have voted to begin with?
About half the voters in the US don't bother to vote. Are we to base our laws on vote integrity on those too apathetic to cast a ballot?
All voters will be affected by this DoJ rejection because every invalid or fraudulent ballot cast cheapens legitimate votes. Voter fraud is difficult to prove simply because both parties know how to hide their shenanigans from the superficial efforts on election night to insure the integrity of the vote. The "graveyard" ballots cast for John Kennedy in 1960 by the Chicago Democratic machine that swung the state of Illinois to the Democrats and gave JFK the election wasn't discovered until years later. Modern day voter fraud is far more sophisticated and just as difficult to detect. Illegal immigrants, convicts barred from voting by law, and the usual efforts by unions to game the system make any "study" that shows voter fraud not to be a big problem useless. You have to be able to discover the fraud to include it in a study. And while everyone knows it happens, proving it is another question.
Heritage case study on voter impersonation:
Critics contend that such laws are unnecessary because "impersonation fraud" at the polling place simply does not exist. It is true that direct evidence of such fraud is hard to come by, but this is for a simple reason: Election officials cannot discover an impersonation if they are denied the very tool needed to detect it-an identification requirement. The Seventh Circuit noted "the extreme difficulty of apprehending a voter impersonator" unless the impersonator and the voter being impersonated (if living) arrive at the polls at the same time, which is a very unlikely occurrence.
Note the historic coordination between ACORN and the Democratic party. According to Jack Kelly, of 1.3 million registrations gathered by ACORN in 2008, 400,000 were fraudulent. And those are the registrations they were able to discover.
There are still parts of the country - some big cities, some rural areas - where people won't vote unless they are paid. The notion that fraud and corruption of the vote is not a large problem simply doesn't hold up to scrutiny.
And even it it wasn't, shouldn't everything be done to insure the integrity of the vote?
Hat Tip: Ed Lasky