Article Suggests that, at Least in Pennsylvania, Government Photo-ID Law May Injure Republican Voters Also

Emily Bazelon has this article in Slate. Apparently, the expert evidence in the ongoing Pennsylvania trial on the Pennsylvania law requiring Government Photo-ID to vote at the polls suggests that the law could disenfranchise more Republicans than Democrats. Thanks to Rick Hasen’s ElectionLawBlog for the link.


  1. TruFoe · · Reply

    These are, I believe, direct quotes from the linked article:

    “The number of voters affected may not be as huge, or as overwhelmingly Democratic, as it seems.”

    “But if it turns out that voter ID laws don’t overwhelmingly tilt in favor of the Republicans who support them—well, that would at least be a teeny bit satisfying. To the extent the party takes a political hit for disenfranchising people, it would be doing so for nothing. And then maybe we’d get rid of these bad laws, once and for all.”

    The article gives no indication or assertion that I can see that more Republicans will be disenfranchised than Democrats. Apparently the author is not naive enough to believe that Republican legislatures and governors would pass laws which would have the effect of disenfranchising voters from among their own constituency.

  2. TruFoe · · Reply

    The article does not suggest that the voter-ID law in Pennsylvania could disenfranchise MORE Republicans than Democrats. Your post is very misleading, Mr. Winger.

  3. Brad M · · Reply

    I would not underestimate the stupidity of a Republican legislature to pass a law that would hurt their electoral chances.

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  5. Richard Winger · · Reply

    I wrote the post carefully. It is well-known that the segment of the population that is least likely to have government photo-ID and the greatest amount of trouble getting such ID are the elderly. It is also well-known that the elderly vote Republican at a greater rate than any other age group. The post does not say the law will disenfranchise more Republicans than Democrats, but that it might do that.

    The author of the article says at the end that there is a great deal more information in the expert reports presented to the Commonwealth Court, but does not try to summarize it all in detail.

  6. TruFoe · · Reply

    3 –

    All due respect, Brad…that would be a mistake.

    These voter ID laws are designed with the same purpose and effect as does the despicable, anti-democratic “caging” of newly registered voters in districts which trend predictably heavy Democratic. You might snare some Republicans or indies in the process, but you’ll take the vote away from far more Democratic voters. Both practices are wins for the Republican party. In fact, the article cited above reaches the same conclusion, at least I read it.

    A.L.E.C (American legislative Executive Council), an institution which is dedicated exclusively to the expansion of corporate power at the expense of individuals’ rights), knows that voter-ID laws disenfranchise a disproportionate number of like Democratic voters. And that’s why they have created model legislation which has been used to create voter-ID laws in states controlled by the pro-corporate, pro-filthy-rich Republican party – Florida and Pennsylvania being prime examples.

    These boys aren’t stupid. Not when there’s more money to be made, and more power to be accreted. That’s why they encourage local legislators, many of whom ARE actually stupid, to not waste time crafting their own legislation on matters important to A.L.E.C. “Just copy this and pass it – you’ll love it.” That’s their approach.



  7. 5 –

    “…the law could disenfranchise more Republicans than Democrats”

    Your words. But not the words of the author of the article you cite as far as I can tell from reading it.

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