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Photo ID Amendment Passes Senate, Will Head to Ballot

Voters will weigh in on the constitutional amendment in November.

This November, Minnesota voters will decide whether photo IDs should be required the next time they go to the polls.

The Senate, by a 35-29 vote, passed a bill on Wednesday afternoon that will send the question to the ballot as a proposed constitutional amendment. The House passed the same bill early Wednesday. Because it is a proposed constitutional amendment, Gov. Mark Dayton will not get a chance to approve—or veto—the bill.

Sen. Ron Latz (DFL-District 44) voted against the measure.

The issue has divided the Legislature on party lines, with Republican supporters saying it would add integrity to Minnesota's election system, while Democratic opponents say the measure is unnecessary and could disenfranchise some voters.

Senate District 44 DFLers Rep. Steve Simon and Rep. Ryan Winkler, who voted against the bill in the House, said they think the amendment would , and both predict legal challenges.

Marc Drummond April 05, 2012 at 06:21 PM
We do provide evidence that we are eligible to vote when we register to vote. People need to provide evidence that they live at their address. It's not that election integrity isn't important, it's that this isn't a very good way to ensure election integrity. Simply showing a driver's license with a photo does not prove that you are who you say you are, and that you are eligible to vote. IDs can be faked. A driver's license does not provide information on eligibility to vote. Your driver's license does not show your citizenship. Or whether or not you are on or off probation for a felony. The solution I find interesting is electronic pollbooks. This would import the photos and information from the driver's license database. When you go to vote, there would be a photo in the system that could be verified. This is more secure than IDs that can be faked. And for people just registering without a driver's license, a photo could be taken, to be used in the database in the future. This seems more secure and in fact costs a fraction of the costs that this amendment would impose. When this was suggested as an alternative, the amendment authors refused to consider it. That's very disappointing, because it seems like a good compromise that enhances election integrity, while keeping costs down and avoiding massive problems of people not being able to vote.
Edward April 05, 2012 at 07:48 PM
"It's not that election integrity isn't important, it's that this isn't a very good way to ensure election integrity." Ensuring election integrity was never the real intent . . . that's just the window dressing.
Markus April 07, 2012 at 01:27 PM
Renee, I don't know if these are in jail, but they've been convicted. http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/minnesota-leads-the-nation-in-voter-fraud-convictions-131782928.html It's also been confirmed over 1400 felons ineligible to vote voted in the 2008 election. Over 23,000 addresses provided by Election Day registrants could not be verified. Looks like a problem in need of a solution.
Markus April 07, 2012 at 01:34 PM
Freedom of movement is also a right. Try telling that to a TSA agent when he asks for your photo ID.
Markus April 07, 2012 at 01:48 PM
The constitution doesn't explicitly ensure the right to vote, however it does detail how people cannot be denied the right to vote because of race, gender, if you're over 18, etc. Aside from these requirements, states determine the qualifications of voters.

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