2013-10-31 / Letters

No Photo ID Required To Vote

To The Editor:

Fulton County registered voters should realize that you can vote this coming election day, November 5, without having to show any kind of photo ID. Only first time voters – those who have not voted before – are required to show photo ID, such as a state driver’s license or government ID.

Local election officials are still allowed to ask voters if they have a voter ID, but under no circumstances may they tell voters that such an ID is required in order to vote in this election, nor may they advise voters that such an ID may be needed in future elections.

On August 16, 2013, for the third consecutive election, PA Commonwealth Court Judge Bernard McGinley blocked enforcement of the state’s photo voter ID law. In ruling that local election officials may not advise voters that a photo ID may be required in future elections, Judge McGinley stated that such advisory statements are misleading, saying “There is no value in inaccurate information.”

On top of that, PA’s Department of State has admitted publicly that not a single case of in-person voter fraud has been found in the state – which has always been put forward as the reason and basis for this law in the first place. So the real question is – why are PA legislators trying to solve a problem that does not exist?

PA Auditor General Eugene DePasquale has also determined that all the money going into advertising and promoting this law has in fact been “a waste of taxpayer money.” This money (estimated at $5 million) could be going toward building bridges (one out of four in PA has been found to be structurally deficient) and covering the huge shortfalls in state education funding that have taken place since 2011. Fulton County school districts’ share alone in this loss has come to more than a million dollars ($1,015,376).

So please, do not get confused by any of the advertising about this law. This law does not apply to this election. To repeat, the state is not enforcing this law at this time.

Please vote in this election. It is our right as citizens to make our voices heard.

Joy Dasher

Big Cove Tannery

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