Voter ID Laws: What’s the Problem?


Last year here in North Carolina, the Republican controlled legislature passed a law requiring voters to show a valid, government issued ID in order to vote. It will go into effect for the 2016 elections. And, as in other places where such a law has been passed, the left is in an uproar. This week, our legislature began their short session, and right on cue, the protests at the State Capitol resumed.

            The Democrat/left wing protestors have termed their actions as “Moral Mondays.” (Of course, by so doing, they knowingly imply that those on the other side are immoral. It’s not a great way to start a dialogue if that’s what you truly want, but there really isn’t any interest here in a dialogue. This is just  political posturing and an attempt to extort legislatures for their political end. It harkens back to the “Moral Majority” from the right from a previous generation. Those on the left at that time objected to that term because of what it implied about them.) And one of the main targets of their protests is the new voter ID law. And frankly, I can’t find a rational explanation for their protests, especially for those, who like me, claim to come from a Christian world-view.

            Let’s see if we can lay a common foundation to reach some agreement here. Can we agree on the following two principles?

            1. Everyone who is legally entitled to vote in the United States should be able to vote without undue hindrance or barrier.

            Are we good so far? Can both sides agree on that? I would think so.

Now I am sure that there may be some on both sides of the political spectrum who may wish to disagree with this, but I have not heard anyone actually espouse that position. (Of course there have been those who have suggested that those who don’t believe in man-made global warming should be imprisoned, but that’s another whole issue.)

            2. No one except those people who are legally entitled to vote in the United States should be able to vote in the United States, and they should be able to vote only once in every election.

            Now, if you disagree with #2, then there is no need to go any further. If you want other people to vote, or you want people to vote more than once, then you aren’t interested in free and fair elections. You are a hypocrite at best, and a criminal at worst. (If you think the laws ought to be changed to enable convicted felons to regain or retain their voting rights, that isn’t a disagreement with this. If that’s the case, then work to change the law.) If you disagree with this second principle, then you support election fraud, and you are interested in political power and tyranny, not democracy and justice. And if you call yourself a Christian and support voter fraud, then you are a fraud.

            So, if we agree on those two principles, then it is a matter of trying to find the best way to accomplish those two things. And I strongly believe if people of good will would actually stop the political posturing and try to reach an agreement, then we might be able to get some good done, and at least reach a place where we agree to disagree about the means, not the end. Unfortunately, I am not sure we are dealing with people who are truly interested in what they proclaim.

            What possibly can be the reasons for protesting against the voter ID laws?

1. It will place an undue burden on poor people who don’t possess a valid ID, and thus it will disenfranchise them.

            Seriously? Folks, we aren’t talking about a poll tax here. That was government sanctioned voter disenfranchisement. We aren’t talking about a literacy test for voters. (Though I am not real comfortable that the college girl who thinks Benghazi was a guy she worked with at the gym deciding who is running foreign policy. But hopefully, the uninformed on both sides balance things out.)

            If there was anything here that smacked of an attempt to stop people from voting, I would be with you. But, if you are of the small minority of people who don’t already possess some form of government issued ID (driver’s license, passport, etc.) then you are going to be provide one, free of charge. There aren’t onerous requirements here to prove you are who you say you are. There are so many options for documentation, that there isn’t a valid reason for someone not to get an ID card. ( )

       There is no fee charged for a North Carolina ID Card for an individual registered to vote in North Carolina who does not have acceptable photo identification under N.C. General Statute 163-166.13.

To obtain a No Fee Voter ID card, you must sign a declaration stating that you do not have an acceptable photo ID. If you already have an acceptable photo ID, you are not eligible to receive a No Fee Voter ID.

You must also be registered to vote. If you are not a registered voter, DMV will assist you in completing your voter registration application during your visit, and you will still be eligible for your No Fee Voter ID.


How can this be an undue hindrance? And if you argue that an individual has problems going to get the ID, then how will he/she go to vote? If activists can organize folks to drive voters to the polls at every election, what’s the issue with getting the small number of people who actually don’t have IDs to the DMV? This law wasn’t passed one month and instituted the next election. We still have two more years to go. That is more than enough time to get every citizen legally able to vote a valid ID.

2. It will suppress voter turnout because it harkens back to the Jim Crow era.

How long is this argument going to be made? Yes, there are people still alive who had to endure the segregation and prejudice of that era. But that was then. This is not the 1950’s. And it’s not the 1960’s… even though many of the leading protestors act as if it was. (Of course, back then they were being put down by the Democrats, and supported by Republicans.) And the facts of the matter is that after voter ID laws were passed and enacted in Texas and Georgia, that minority turnout actually increased. ; ; ; ) and studies support that ( ).

So if those reasons aren’t valid, then why are the protestors still screaming about the law. There are only three options that I can see.

1. They know the facts, but they are conveniently ignoring them. These protests are about political power, and nothing less.

Honestly, for most of the leaders, I firmly believe that this is where they are. I can’t believe they actually buy into their own espoused arguments. Their claims to justice and fairness are just smokescreens for their own political games. And if they are doing this, while speaking from a platform of Christian faith, then they are just religious hucksters. They are like Marjoe, proclaiming a message that they themselves don’t believe.

2. They are ignorant of the facts, and actually believe what they are saying.

For a lot of the folks participating in the protests, I think this is where they fall. They actually have good hearts, and want justice and fairness. But they have been sucked into a particular movement and mindset, and are blindly following their leaders. Well, golly gee folks, do some studying and reading. Go back to those two principles at the top. If we can agree on those, then let’s talk about the best way to accomplish those goals. Don’t just go out an protest because it was Republicans who passed the law. That’s just willful ignorance. Are you interested in truth and justice, or do you just want a certain political party to win, regardless?

3. They are plainly aware of the facts, know that election fraud is an issue, but don’t care, because they want it to continue.

Yes, there are those that are in this camp. And please don’t tell me that it hasn’t happened. Election fraud has been an issue in this country from Tammany Hall to Acorn. And it’s wrong (Principle #2). When there is election fraud, then we don’t live in a truly free democratic republic.

And if you argue that we don’t need voter ID because there isn’t enough evidence to justify it. What’s the real problem? Is it the cost? Really? A one-time cost per person for the small minority of people who don’t already have ID, from a government bureau which is already set up and equipped to do exactly what they are tasked to do. Do you even think that’s a valid argument?

At the end folks, I just don’t get it. I see you out there on Mondays protesting voter ID, and I have to wonder whether you are a political huckster, an uninformed follower, or a political cheat. I don’t see another option.

If you can get me a good, rational argument against voter ID, I would love to hear it. Like I said, I stand by those two principles at the top. I would hope you do too.