UPDATED: ID Now Required to Vote

The governor signed the bill into law Thursday.

The state House on Wednesday approved legislation that requires voters to present identification at the polls.

The legislation, House Bill 934, requires each voter to present proof of identification at every election.

Gov. Tom Corbett signed the bill into law Thursday.

“I am signing this bill because it protects a sacred principle, one shared by every citizen of this nation. That principle is: one person, one vote,’’ Corbett said. “It sets a simple and clear standard to protect the integrity of our elections.’’

The law goes into effect immediately, but the photo ID will not be required for the primary election next month. However, voters will be reminded at that time that a photo ID will be required for November’s general election.

Proponents of the bill, such as House Majority Leader Mike Turzai, R-Allegheny County, lauded the bill, saying it will “strengthen voter identification and enfranchise all voters.”

The state will provide non-driver identification cards for those who need it, free of charge.

According to Turzai, a uniform voter identification requirement “assures all voters will be treated equally and fairly and will prevent some voters from being singled out for identification while other voters are allowed to vote without identifying themselves.”

But state , D-Cecil Township, disagreed.

White voted no on the bill—saying that several flaws with the legislation jumped out during floor debate.

Take the issue of disabled veterans and their identification, for example.

He said because of technical requirements in the legislation regarding acceptable forms of identification, the type now issued to disabled veterans “would not qualify under the bill.”

“It could actually have the unintended consequence of disenfranchising voters who fought and shed blood for our country,” he said.

White added: "Voting is a fundamental, constitutional right, and if we're going to do anything that infringes on that right, we need to make sure no one will be disenfrachised. This bill fails at that spectacularly."

And he said that while proponents of the bill have said the legislation "isn't about the 2012 election, the fact the majority rammed it through after acknowledging that there were flaws certainly makes you wonder whether this was more about politics than policy."

State said he voted no on the bill—as did all House Democrats and three Republicans—for many reasons, one of them financial.

“I voted no because it’s going to cost $11 million to implement,” Neuman, D-North Strabane, said, adding that there isn’t even any evidence that voter fraud is happening at the polls.

As for the "free" identification cards?

"It's not free—it's taxpayer dollars," he said.

Neuman added that, if there is fraud in the system, it would be in the registration process, not the voting process, and he said that’s what legislation should address.

“It would stop the fraud, if there is any fraud, where it begins,” Neuman said.

He also said it puts poll workers in a position to not only ask for identification, but also spot fake IDs—something they aren't trained to do.

"This bill sounds so innocent, but it's not," he said, adding that similar laws in other states have been challenged and overturned in the courts.

The state Senate passed the bill last week, with state , D-Canonsburg, voting no.

Be March 15, 2012 at 11:54 PM
i dont participate in the fraud that is representative democracy but i just have 2 quick questions, have you really not had to show an id when you go to vote all this time? so i could walk into a polling station with someone elses registration and vote for them? and people are against showing you are who you are when voting? and who doesnt have an id? even if you dont drive theres a state id card, it costs like $10. Im dazed and confused by anyone who would be against this and shocked that you dont have to show id. The only explanation for being against it is that you want fraud to occur. Its the only thing that makes sense.
Jesse White March 16, 2012 at 12:58 AM
As stated in the article, I have no problem with showing ID to vote, but this bill imposes unnecessary restrictions that will disenfranchise voters. Let me be clear (and read the bill if you don't believe me): if you are a disabled veteran, and you go to vote with your valid ID issued by the US government, your ID will not be good enough to vote. You will have to fill out a provisional ballot and then go get a new ID from PENNDOT and take that ID to the County Dept. of Elections within six days. THESE ARE DISABLED VETERANS WHO FOUGHT FOR OUR NATION. THESE ARE DISABLED VETERANS WHO FOUGHT FOR OUR NATION. THERE ARE DISABLED VETERANS WHO FOUGHT FOR OUR NATION. I didn't vote against this bill because I'm a Democrat. I voted against it because I'm an American who values the contributions of our men and women in uniform, and I would never disenfranchise those men and women. And I certainly would not vote to spend $11 million in taxpayer money to do so. And Be, you may think that by 'not participating' in democracy while incessantly rambling about everything wrong with it, you have taken your hipster logic to a new level of ignorance.
Mana March 16, 2012 at 01:21 AM
Rep white, I will never vote for you again! You are full of it! Would you please explain to me how these veterans are receiving healthcare, buying alcohol, driving, flying, or returning merchandise to Walmart. All require ID. I am so tired of these silly, thoughtless argument.
Roger March 16, 2012 at 02:55 AM
I will give you a good example of how easy it is to bypass the no-ID rule. Our son grew up in the township and registered to vote, He voted a few times before he left the area after college. When my wife and I went to the polls, his name remained next to ours for years, five years at least, most likely longer. All I needed to do was go to the poll, sign the register, vote, and leave. Then, when new poll workers staff the station, I return, claim his name, sign, vote, and leave. This is one example of a very obvious way to vote twice in the same election, without having to show an ID. Stop already with the hardship reasoning! Getting a photo ID seems like an extremely small price to pay for the right of voting. I am baffled why it is taken so long for the change. And, I see many other states are imposing the same provisions (regardless of what Eric Holder tells Texas - never stand up).
Mana March 16, 2012 at 12:13 PM
Rep White, please explain further what you mean about I'd for disabled veterans? According to this list ( off the observer reporter website) military ID is accepted? Photo IDs must be current and contain an expiration date, unless otherwise noted. Acceptable IDs include: n Those issued by the U.S. government or Pennsylvania government. n Pennsylvania driver's license or non-driver's license photo ID, valid for voting purposes 12 months past expiration date. n Valid U.S. passport. n U.S. military ID, active duty and retired military. Military dependents' ID must contain an expiration date. n Employee photo ID issued by federal, state, county or municipal government. n Photo ID cards from an accredited public or private Pennsylvania college or university. n Photo ID cards issued by a state care facility, including long-term care facilities, assisted living residences or personal care homes.
Jesse White March 16, 2012 at 01:01 PM
Mana, The ID cards issued to permanently disabled veterans do NOT have an expiration date. This law, versions of which were just declared unconstitutional in Texas and Wisconsin, require photo ID with an expiration date, meaning the ID a disabled veteran can use for everything else will not be valid to vote. I deal with disabled veterans on a regular basis, and many of them are unable to drive, so the ID they have is the only one they have. When this came up during debate on the House floor, proponents of the bill admitted it was a loophole, but refused to send the bill back to committee for one day to fix it. If you don't ever vote for me again for this reason, I can accept that. Unlike some people who fought for your right to vote, you'll at least have the freedom to make that choice without being turned away at the polls.
Mana March 16, 2012 at 01:42 PM
As a wife of a veteran I find you comments demeaning. Are you telling me these disabled veterans only have one form of valid ID? I have. Really hard time believing that. Be honest, if the legislation was changed to include this form do ID would you have voted or found another 'reason' not to?
Jesse White March 16, 2012 at 06:48 PM
So my comments defending the rights of disabled veterans against being disenfranchised to vote are demeaning to you as the wife of a veteran? Shouldn't you have been more offended if I had ignored the problem and voted for the bill?
Mana March 16, 2012 at 07:26 PM
Just answer the question... Under no circumstance would you have voted for the bill. Admit it. As for ignoring the the 'problem', I don't believe there is one with disabled veterans not having an ID they could use to vote. So, now that the law has passed, how do you plan on helping these veterans get the ID the need to vote?
*JB* March 17, 2012 at 01:18 AM
I support voter ID. It will eliminate voter fraud. If you don't have a photo ID, how can we be sure you are a valid voter? Even in Mexico, you have to have ID to vote. It's about time we take steps to take corruption out of voting in PA.
Jesse White March 17, 2012 at 01:27 AM
Well then, you must know something the 203 representatives debating the floor on the bill of the House of Representatives don't, because they acknowledged the problem during floor debate. Since you aren't willing to believe any fact you disagree with, I won't bother you any further.
Mana March 17, 2012 at 02:11 AM
And you still won't answer my question..... Had the bill been changed to allow the disabled veterans ID would you have voted for the bill? Now that the bill has passed how are you helping said veterans?
Jesse White March 17, 2012 at 03:43 AM
You clearly are content to be contrarian and disagree with anything I have to say, so I'm not going to waste my time arguing with you. Maybe I'll just have anyone with questions call you, Mana, since you seem to have all the answers despite not necessarily understanding the questions.
Alexander M. Cianfracco March 17, 2012 at 07:06 AM
Dude, when did he call you any of those things? That sounds like defamation to me. And I like a politician who has the guts to explain himself and engage in debate with his constituents. You're just coming off as a bitter, uninformed man with a very loose grasp on both proper punctuation and reality.
Mana March 17, 2012 at 10:31 AM
Just to be clear jam the wife of a veteran not a disabled veteran. Next, how is rep white engaged in any debate? I asked him very simple questions which he refuses to answer. Makes you wonder right? The really sad part of of participating in this forum, is anyone reading this who needs help with ID realizes they will not get it from Rep White. Hopefully the editor will write an article about the correct form of ID and where to go for help.
Jesse White March 17, 2012 at 01:34 PM
Despite my opposition to the bill, we are already communicating with potentially disenfranchised voters. I believe I've explained my positions repeatedly and you simply don't agree with me, so I'm not going to waste my time trying, especially since you are now just resorting to "gotcha" statements that are totally untrue. Please thank your husband for his service to our nation. Anyone who wants my help is free to call me at 724-746-3677 or visit my website at www.pahouse.com/white.
Be March 17, 2012 at 03:54 PM
Why did you have to say what she said was untrue and a gotcha statement, when its not untrue, and even if it was why would you say it This is what I'm talking about. A simple call my office if you would like to discuss is all you had to say. This should be the last post you ever make ever in your life if you have a good pr rep. Nothing good comes from public figures posting and tweeting. Nothing
Be March 17, 2012 at 03:57 PM
It is the last post i'll be making. peace out.
Be March 17, 2012 at 04:05 PM
Theres access, port authority buses are all handicap accessible, the driver license office is handicap accessible. The id card costs $10 and is good for four years. This is not about your district. Its about your party wanting people to be able to committ fraud in their large urban base philadelphia.
Mana March 17, 2012 at 08:05 PM
Well i guess rep white cannot handle simple 'yes' to 'no' questions....
Jesse White March 17, 2012 at 09:16 PM
I'm not going to engage in arguments with anonymous people online. In my previous post, I gave you my contact information. I will be happy to answer any questions you have. I actually gave the same offer multiple times to "Be", and he repeatedly refused to take me up on it.
cecil resident March 18, 2012 at 02:32 PM
One thing that has not been talked about is the absentee ballot and according to WTAE news about the new law voters have to provide a drivers license number if no license last 4 digits of the social security number. So if any elderly person who can not get to the polls can still cast their vote that would include disabled veterans. I don't know to many people under the age of sixty that doesn't have some form of photo ID you need it for hospitals, airports, banks, writing checks in stores, etc. Maybe the law is not perfect no law is but it is needed to clear up all questions about who can vote and who can't.
Alexander M. Cianfracco March 18, 2012 at 03:19 PM
But again, WHERE IS THE EVIDENCE OF VOTER FRAUD THAT WOULD BE FIXED BY THIS BILL??? You are allowing the Koch Brothers and big corporate interests erode the very same Constitutional freedoms you claim to cherish. Need more information? Check out: http://www.alecexposed.org/wiki/ALEC_Exposed and see how your rights are being attacked.
cecil resident March 19, 2012 at 02:22 AM
One ID one vote that's a start , what do you think organizations like ACORN who have all these fraudulent registration form planned to do with them if they got thru it would open a door wide open for people to vote illegally? In a couple of minutes found 2 cases 2008 Philadelphia officals submitted more than 8000 fraudulent forms forms. In 2009 the FBI investigators filed charges against seven Pittsburgh area ACORN workers.for fraudelent forms. There is no reason to submit these such forms unless you plan to do something with it. If you have nothing to hide showing an ID won't hurt a bit.
suzanne kennedy March 19, 2012 at 03:23 AM
Rep White was clear in the article that disenfranchisement was ONE factor which he opposed in the bill. He has other concerns, notably the political overtones to this bill and the way in was rushed through the House and Senate. There are about a dozen states currently proposing similar voter id laws - all currently controlled by Republican Governors. These states are trying to get voter id laws passed prior to the November 2012 elections. The issue of voter ID has not previously and seriously been raised in these states before. Why is it now suddenly such an issue? These states have offered NO evidence that voter fraud AT THE POLLS has been a problem. Photo ID AT THE POLLS has not been required for umpteen years, yet Republicans were silent about it. Why the rush to pass such laws now? Photo ID AT THE POLLS would do nothing to correct the fraudulent registration form issue. The registration review system WORKED in unveiling fraudulent registrations. Voting is a 2 step process 1) registration, which requires identification, and 2) voting AT THE POLLS, which does not require photo ID, up until now. What if a person loses his/her photo ID just prior to election day, and cannot get it replaced in time? They are properly registered, but will not be permitted to exercise their constitutional right to vote because they have no legislatively approved photo ID at the polls? Sounds to me like a Republican strategy to beat our current Democratic President!
cecil resident March 19, 2012 at 02:07 PM
The United States’ voter registration system is in chaos — about 24 million registrations are no longer valid and nearly 2 million dead people are still on voter rolls, according to a new report . Along with the one of every eight voter registrations that is not valid or has significant inaccuracies, there are 2.75 million people currently registered to vote in more than one state, the PEW CENTER on the States study found, so much for your registration review system. This is not a Democratic or Republican study this is just a way for voter fraud to run wild. If a person doesn't have their proof they can file a provisional ballot and they have time to produce the proof they need to make their vote count. This votor ID is a start to stop any chance of fraud no law is perfect just because we never had a law like this on the books for years doesn't mean it is not time to start. Every legal American voter should be glad that their candidate be a Republican or Democrat is getting their votes fair and square
Roger March 19, 2012 at 09:58 PM
Suzanne, I think the heart of your question about "why now" is answered in a previous comment. One word: ACORN.
Alexander M. Cianfracco March 19, 2012 at 11:20 PM
Roger, this bill would NOT stop fraudulent voter registration, so even if your precious ACORN theory was correct, this bill does NOTHING to stop it. Why bother arguing? You're all so damn howl at the wind convinced that you're right because those pesky Democrats keep trying to steal your precious freedom, even though you're too stupid to see it is actually being taken by the corporate whores and evangelical wackos running the GOP.
Roger March 19, 2012 at 11:48 PM
Alexander, ... I guess when arguments fail, name-calling is the next resort. This is not an R or D issue. Why do people wish to make it one?
Amanda Gillooly March 20, 2012 at 01:46 AM
Let's keep is civil please, folks. Thanks!!


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