Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Virginia Requires Voters to Show Photo ID

Governor McDonnell has signed the bill requiring anyone voting in Virginia to show a photo ID.


How bad is this, given that most voters are already required to show photo ID in order to drive cars, get jobs, go to school, and in some cases even move around their school or office, and given that the bill provides for a waiver of the nominal cost of renewing a driver's license if a voter is all that destitute? Er. Um. I don't see the violation of human rights that some Democrats claim is embedded in this new law.

On the other hand, I don't see the improvement in the security of the vote that some Republicans have tried to claim, either. This web site has already discussed how cheap and easy it is to get a misleading photo ID...even when you want an accurate one. If Patrick Moran wants to impersonate a bunch of deceased Democrats, he can probably still do that, and in places like Fairfax and Alexandria he could probably buy a wig and a dress and include some deceased African-American female Democrats. People would think, "Somebody called Lulubelle Marie Smith looks like that? Well, it says she's 97 years old...bless her heart, I guess she's just glad she can still walk around." Because in the kind of mob scene found in urban DMV's and polling areas, people who don't know each other very well are not inclined to take time to get acquainted.

But even if Patrick Moran votes in the name of the late Lulubelle Smith and Ms. Smith's great-nephew sees him and says, "That's funny, I thought Great-Aunt Lulubelle was dead," I'm not convinced that that matters, as long as elections are being conducted without paper ballots. Electronic votes counted overseas are likely to be counted the way foreign interests want them to be counted. If there's not a pile of recyclable paper ballots sitting in an office, we can count on seeing the candidates who most appeal to certain foreign interests win every election, year after year, no matter how unpopular those candidates may be in every actual neighborhood you visit.

Delegate Rob Bell has succeeded in getting identified with the right side of a controversy, but has he succeeded in taking a step toward more accurate election results? This web site doubts that.

If anything, tying electronic voting to voter ID could be a step toward eroding the secrecy of the ballot, empowering the nastier sort of foreign interests to arrange for those who consistently vote for U.S. interests to suffer all sorts of mishaps, losses, and "accidents"...unless, of course, we smarten up and demand paper ballots.