Now, I'm at the age where I like getting carded. I only wish that this particular example of getting carded meant that I looked young enough to pass as a college kid. So I don't mind having to show my I.D. before going to vote against the people who implemented it. But it seems like Democrats somehow feel that such a provision would damage their electoral prospects. The rationale is that it would make it more difficult for young people to register to vote, and because young people vote predominantly Democrat, this would damage the vote totals for the Left. This view somehow seems to be shared by the Republicans (Finally! Something both sides agree on!), which is why they're trying to implement it.
Bullshit! Data have shown in states with voter I.D. requirements that young people vote more frequently. In fact, people young and old vote more frequently overall when there is voter I.D. in place. Why? Because an electorate which feels secure that their vote will count is more likely to vote. Young people especially are disenfranchised more easily, wondering if their newly-minted voting process gets watered-down by the din of the masses, or outright countermanded by voter fraud. With an I.D. requirement, they feel less jaded, and go to the polls. Furthermore, since the general electorate leans left of center anyway, more people voting leads to more Democrats elected. An additional unintended side-effect of voter I.D. is that elderly people will find it more difficult to vote. If they can no longer drive due to impaired vision or other health reasons, they must rely upon the shuttle service at the assisted living center to get them over to the DMV so that they can register for a general state I.D., and that's a major hassle for them. Many of these elderly -- a MAJOR voting bloc for Republicans -- may simply give up.
You know, it's beautiful when both political parties end up doing the right thing for the wrong reasons. When the beneficiary of a given bill ends up opposing it while its proponent stands to unwittingly lose, well, it warms the heart, it really does! It reminds us all that sometimes politicians are too stupid to do the wrong thing. But regardless of which side voter I.D. favors, Republicans do have a legitimate point about it. Namely, it's the right thing to do. We as voters need to be assured that the voting process is done with integrity, and it ultimately benefits no one to have fraud of any sort during an election.
Of course, the ultimate in voter fraud is when politicians try to make things so hopelessly complicated that voters simply don't vote, thus giving more power to those with the time and wherewithal to pay close attention. No proposal has ever come up to deal with that sort of voter fraud, but that's the subject of a later blog. (I've been saying that a lot, lately!)
Meanwhile, In the absence of the 14 Democratic State Senators, who have splendidly done their jobs to the best of their ability by vacating the premises (we're all mature enough to know the difference between commuting and telecommuting), Republicans gave initial approval to the measure without debate. Since it's a fiscally-related bill, it also can't receive final passage until one of the 14 Senators comes back. But the fact that it was brought up without debate from the opposition was clearly a move meant to lure Democrats back. Didn't work, but nice try.
The measure will likely pass when this all blows over. Good for them. Good for us all.