Good Article Review On Supreme Court Allows Texas To Use Strict Voter ID Law In Coming Election

Published: 2021-06-21 23:40:06
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Category: Crime, Texas

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http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/19/us/supreme-court-upholds-texas-voter-id-law.html
On Oct 18, 2014, The Supreme Court upheld the right of Texas to require a photo ID to vote in the mid-term elections to be held on November 4th. This was a long time coming, but the controversy and legal wrangling is not over yet.
Since 2013, Texas had required some type of ID in order to vote. In 2011, the legislature passed, and Governor Perry signed into law, regulations requiring a photo ID to be able to vote. Typical Photo IDs might be a Texas Driver’s license or Concealed Carry Permit, a US Military ID or a US Passport. Before the law could even be implemented, the US Dept. of Justice blocked the law under authority granted to it under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Texas sued in Federal Court, seeking relief from the DOJ action.
In 2013, the Supreme Court invalidated Section 5 of the Voting Rights act of 1965, claiming it is now based on outdated information. Texas began implementing their law and, predictably, various civil rights activist groups sued in Federal Court. On October 9th, 2014, the Federal District Court with jurisdiction regarding laws in Texas struck down the 2011 Texas law as unconstitutional. On October 14th 2014 , the Federal Court of Appeals for the 5th District stayed that ruling. Texas immediately appealed that stay to the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court ruled On Oct. 18th that while the appeal is going forward, Texas could enforce the 2011 law requiring a Photo ID to vote in the 2014 midterm. The Court’s reasoning was that because early voting was going to start in Texas on Monday, Oct. 20th, it would throw the voting process into chaos to change the voting rules the day voting starts. So, for the coming election, Photo IDs will be required to vote in Texas.
Going forward, the Supreme Court has a decision to make. They can accept the appeal of the stay by Texas, and rule on the merits of the case. Or they can choose to not hear the appeal, in which case the ruling by the Fifth District stands and the Texas law requiring a Photo ID to vote becomes unconstitutional.
Personally, I am in favor of requiring Photo IDs to vote. The requirement to produce a Photo ID has become a part of our everyday lives. You can’t open up a bank account, get on an airplane or cruise ship, get a hunting or fishing license or, depending on your appearance, buy alcoholic beverages without showing a Photo ID. The sanctity of a vote is considerably more important than the activities I just mentioned. If a state requires a Photo ID to vote, I believe they have two obligations. First, the ID should be free to those who say they cannot afford a standard fee. Second, the State should conduct outreach into communities so that anyone who wants a Photo ID can obtain one with minimal effort. As long as a state meets those two requirements, I support the concept of requiring a Photo ID to vote.

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