Confronting the Voter ID question: a modest proposal

Over at McGehee’s site, I found this posting, which in turn linked to this story about a lawsuit over requiring voters to show an ID when they go to vote. ( may let you bypass the pesky registration.)

Apparently, the idea of requiring a prospective voter to show some form of ID when they go to cast their ballots is horrifying and reprehensible to some people, who think that poll takers should simply take their word that they are who they say they are. After all, it’s only the right to vote we’re talking about here, not something important like buying cigarettes or beer, seeing an R-rated movie, or writing a check for a purchase.

A while ago, I had yet another if my “evil thoughts” on how to counter this sort of idiocy. If certain people, such as Tisha Tallman, regional counsel for the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, who is quoted in the case, have a problem with this, how would they react next election day if they showed up and found out that they had already voted several hours ago?

I think it would be an elegant form of civil disobedience if those who opposed having to show an ID found themselves unable to vote because someone else claiming to be them beat them to the polls and usurped their franchise.

(Mathematically speaking, I’ve never seen the difference between telling someone they can’t vote, and allowing one who shouldn’t be allowed to vote. Suppose I was planning to vote “yes” on a ballot question. Is there a difference in the end if I am denied the right to vote, or if an opponent is allowed to vote twice, or someone who should not be allowed to vote at all allowed to vote no? Not really.)

The only problem I see with my little idea is that it’s a felony — and I happen to be on the side that voter fraud, of any kind, is wrong.

Nonetheless, it’s a fun thought.


Congressman Turns On Anti-Immigrant Teacher
Bonfire of the Vanities #116


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