Although Carlos Gamiño is a criminal defense lawyer, he’s still intrigued by the entire American justice system. Here’s Attorney Gamiño’s take on the new (old, but reinstated) voter ID laws in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin has been going back and forth on voter ID laws, which some people claim put an unfair burden on minorities and poor voters, but now a federal appeals court has stepped in.
Wisconsin’s voter ID law, which requires voters to have photo identification in order to vote, will go back into effect before November’s elections.
Acceptable ID Under Wisconsin’s Voter ID Law
Several forms of identification will get you into the voting booth this November, including a:
- Wisconsin driver’s license or state ID card
- Military ID card
- Certificate of naturalization that was issued within two years of the election you’re attempting to vote in
- Student ID card, provided that it was issued by an accredited Wisconsin university or college (there are some restrictions on this one, including that it’s dated and signed; students must also provide proof of enrollment)
- Wisconsin Native American tribal card with a photo
Does Our Voter ID Law Prevent Voter Fraud?
According to Governor Scott Walker, Wisconsin’s voter ID law is a good thing.
“The ruling is a win for the electoral process and voters of Wisconsin,” said Walker. “Today’s ruling makes it easier to vote and harder to cheat.”
“We think this is a step back in time to the era prior to the Voting Rights Act that established fairness in elections,” said Mayor Tom Barrett. “There is a disparity in the population that will be most affected – people in poverty, students and seniors.”
While the fairness of photo ID laws is probably always going to be in question—if not here, then somewhere else—one thing’s for sure: if you don’t have a valid photo ID, you won’t be able to cast a ballot in November.
What do you think of that? Is there enough time for non-ID card holders to prepare, and is this a good thing that promotes voting fairness in our state?
Until next time,