The Voter-Fraud Myth: What Racist Voter ID Laws Are Really About

Our coverage of controversial voter ID laws touched a nerve in many of our readers. Here’s what you had to say.

Is Voter Fraud a Myth? Here's What Racist Voter ID Laws Are Really AboutAre Voter ID laws racist? It’s a question that has touched a nerve in many of our readers. Here is the best response we’ve received to our coverage on this controversial topic:

I am of an age that recalls a significant lack of access to certain institutions, like hospitals, for a mother to deliver her child because of the color of her skin or the lack of means in her wallet. This means there are millions of seniors over the age of 60 still living in or near their place of birth who do not have a birth certificate. And don’t think that these people needed to present a birth certificate to register for school, apply for a job or enlist in the military. I can assure you none of these institutions asked for it.

I also know that there are thousands of young to middle-aged people who are earning low to moderate incomes who never obtained a copy of their birth certificates because no one ever asked for it before, and even if they were asked, they had to weigh the expense to obtain one against their next meal, bus ride or rent payment. These people would have to scrounge for the extra money to purchase a copy of their birth certificate for what? The right to vote every two or four years in the nation that they were born in, paid taxes to and sacrificed their lives for during wars.

I have traveled enough in the United States to know that in many regions of our country, people do not drive because they do not own a car or don’t need one because they rely on public transportation or their feet to walk to where they need to go. These same people never thought to get an ID from the DMV because where they live, people know one another.

There is an old saying: “Walk a mile in someone else’s shoes.” Those of you who have ID and think that it is sooooo easy to get one need to open your eyes, really listen with your ears and walk away from your comfort zone to the outer rim. Then tell me what these new voter ID requirements are really all about.

There is no evidence of outcome-changing voter fraud in America. What there is evidence of is narrow-minded, life-inexperienced people who can’t think for themselves in the midst of manufactured clouds of fear and mindless screeching of impending doom by callous extremists. The need for voter IDs in the United States is baseless, has no merit and is extremely cruel in its intent. Just because people do not live their lives like you does not mean that they are less human, less deserving of the rights of all citizens, and without need for each of us to stand firm for all of us to fully participate in the processes that shape this nation.

Let’s move on to what really matters: saving this country for everyone who is here. We cannot afford to waste one human life or to trample one person’s rights so that a narrow but vocal few can scream fire while they are in the middle of a theater. comment

For more on the election and racism, read:

Is Jim Crow Back? Racist Voter Laws Exclude 5 Million Blacks, Latinos From Polls

Are Voter ID Laws Racist?

‘Racist’ Pennsylvania Voter ID Law Struck Down

Racist Obama Facebook Pages & Your Office: What Do You Need to Know?

Why Obama & Romney Aren’t Connecting With Women

Are Obama & Romney Ignoring Latinos?

Recommended Articles


  • If your GOAL is to Allow ILLEGAL ALIENS, Criminals who have lost the RIGHT to vote through their ILLEGAL Activities, then you WILL call these Laws “Racist”, but then, what is one to Expect from a Political Party who Fought AGAINST All of the Freeing Laws in USA History (AKA Democrats)
    And to Say there is NO Voter Fraud, means you have Kept your Head in the Sand (like an Ostrich), for the last several years, where Vote Buying by BOTH Democrats and Republicans, have been found in ALMOST EVERY SINGLE STATE, where Voter Intimidation by the Black Panthers has been Proven, in More than Just Philly, Where Voter Intimidation by FIXING the POLLS, HAS BEEN PROVEN over the last several Months.
    You Wrote this Article to Continue the LIES the Democrats Try to Continue.
    Why are you MORE interested in LYING than in dealing in TRUTH?

    • Lilly Buckwalter

      OMG – edav38 is one scared person. It is hard for me to believe he/she even reads diversity magazine with views like that. You have a lot of work still to do Luke. Good Luck!

      • Lilly Buckwalter

        By the way, you do not need ID in PA this year. They will ask, but you do not have to show.

    • How did all of these old folks get their Social Security WITHOUT A BIRTH CERTIFICATE AND AN ID? Oh…then it magically appears…it’s not racist for the SSA to demand on to get your benefits!

      • You do not need a picture ID to get your SS card. Only your birth certificate. Same for babies and adults. You only need a picture ID if you are changing your name.

        As to the original article, it is NOT easy to get a gov’t issued, non-driver’s ID in my state. My daughter wanted to get her permit, she had to have a picture ID first. That meant getting a non-driver’s ID (not free in my state). In order to get a non-driver’s ID, she had to have SIX proofs of identification. She still lives at home at not quite 22, doesn’t have bills in her name, etc. It was a major production to get her an ID.

      • The cause of the fraud was malfeasance by the county government ( they did not update records in a timely manner). I would agree to address this problem. If a the government leaders at fault went to prison for not doing their job, the rest would sharpen up. There’s apparently no damage by this fraud, which is insignificant in the greater picture.

  • edav38, while I don’t entirely agree with the article, I agree even less with your response. The writer did not claim absolutely no voter fraud–the statement was “no outcome-changing voter fraud”. Given the structure of the presidential election, it is hard to see how voter fraud could really change the outcome of that election. Even the challenge of the Bush election in Florida couldn’t come up with enough fraud on either side to affect that vote. In states with small populations, it is possible that fraud could change the outcome of US Senate or House elections, though highly unlikely. In the last Montana US Senate race fewer than 4000 votes separated the winner from the loser and there was no indication that fraud was responsible for that difference. The only outcomes that are truly subject to fraud are local elections and for the most part, those would be in areas where voters would be known. On the other hand, I also believe some sort of ID system is needed because of the fluidity of our populations. The issue is how to make those IDs available to everyone at a cost anyone can afford. I don’t have the answer to that one, but it is something that voter registration processes need to consider. As a final note, most offenders get their right to vote back once they are out of prison.

  • edav38 needs to settle down before their conspiracy theories cause them to have a stroke. The so-called voter ID laws are but yet another avenue being used to prevent (legally registered) folks from voting in an effort to allow the Republicans to gain the advantage in winning the White House. Pure and simple. There is so much ugliness going on in the world in general and with this presidential election, in particular that no one should be surprised. Disgusted, yes but not surprised. Should there be a drive to “shore up” voter registration ID initiatives. Maybe, but not during a presidential election year. That is just way to obvious.

    • Ummm… It’s 2014… The next Presidential election isn’t for two more years….

    • I believe those that truly have a problem of having to get a form of ID to vote are those that are illegally voting in my opinion. Everyone I know has an ID. All may not vote but they carry an ID. I don’t think I have ever known someone without an ID and I am 50 years old. Even my uncle who was never married, never really worked because he had a disability even had an ID and I don’t believe he ever voted. So please stop with all this crap. It is a privilege to vote so act like it.

      • Luke Visconti

        You’re entitled to your own opinion, but not to your own facts, ignoramus. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • Drivers licenses and state ids are issued regardless of race. Even your Medicaid card is an ID. Or is it racist for me to point that out.

    • Luke Visconti

      No, it’s not racist to point that out, but your posts tell me that you’re a virulent racist. Go troll someplace else. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

      • He makes a good point here (haven’t read any of his other posts). I don’t think requiring identification is inherently racist or evil. It applies equally to every race. If anything you may call it class-ist as your points seem to focus on low-income individuals mostly.

        Voter fraud likely isn’t as “rare” as most would have you believe. Common sense will tell you that only those who are actually caught are counted in the statistics, furthermore Eric Holder explicitly stated the DOJ will not investigate voter fraud (see the problem here?). To spell it out, if voter fraud isn’t investigated for the most part, the numbers of people caught will be very marginal.

        Holder and the DOJ are able to ignore studies like the one I am about to reference, because they are done by private groups and therefor nobody can actually be convicted of fraud if the DOJ chooses to ignore the evidence.

        Note: this site is admittedly right-leaning, however when you strip out the partisan talk and look explicitly at the numbers it is quite alarming.

        • Luke Visconti

          Eric Holder did not say the DOJ won’t investigate voter fraud. (Here’s a link to a memo that gives procedures protecting the vote and preventing fraud: I’m going to include the link to the article you reference on True The Vote to illustrate what a load of garbage it is—the only links are to its own website! There are no external links to anything the site asserts, no pictures of “problematic” documents, no documentation of a vote being in any way fraudulent. The article is, however, full of misleading “history” about the Democratic Party (which is an organized storyline and has turned up here in other posts). Here’s the FULL context: The Democratic Party of the post–Civil War South was the anti-Lincoln, pro-slavery party. Lyndon B. Johnson (D) maneuvered to pass the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Right Acts and commented while signing the Civil Rights Act, “We’ve lost the South for a generation.” Richard Nixon (R) invented the “Southern strategy” to pander to racists, and our modern definition of Republican and Democrat was conceived.

          By the way, the founder of True The Vote is also a member of Groundswell. Look it up.

          We’re back at the beginning: I have not seen a single credible study that there is significant voting fraud. There is no fraud—these laws target poor people. MOST poor people in this country are Black and Latino. That you would think the Attorney General would be permissive on voter fraud to get Democrats elected is really foolish—it would be the Republican’s greatest dream come true if they could find a cabal of people committing vote fraud. The fact that they can’t produce a single incident means they have to create a bogeyman. Turn on the lights, there’s nothing under your bed. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

          • I find it ironic Luke, that I must provide you my email address and my name in order for me to post on your website. In order for me to have my voice be “heard” I must be identified by you and your affiliates. 20% of americans are without email, and I’m sure the vast majority are poor people. Thus aren’t you in turn being “racist” by disenfranchising internet users whom do not have email to partake in such a forum?

          • Luke Visconti

            No. Let’s not forget that to post a response a person would have to have access to the Internet to read the article in the first place. Access is free in most libraries. Email is free. I’m not requiring people to post their email address (nor do I track their IP address) to discriminate against poor people—I do that to discriminate against the dirtbag white supremacists, neo-Nazis and other trash that post their nonsense on this site on a daily basis. You’re not one of those guys are you, Chris? Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

          • Almost every response you give on here is either rude, condescending or close minded. I don’t agree with racism even in the slightest but I can tell that so many people like you cannot take being called out when you are obviously biased and wrong to the point of attacking others.
            Racism is wrong, but I do not see how it is racist to ask everyone for some form of identification when they vote.

          • Luke Visconti

            That’s because you’re fine with accepting a non-solution to a non-problem because it fits with how you already feel about people. Voter-ID laws are not about voting fraud because there is no voting fraud. It’s a racist suppression of Black and Latino voters. But that’s OK with you. Drink your Koch and be a good tool of the manipulators. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

      • That’s right…anybody who has even considered even for a second the legitimacy of voter ID laws is a extreme right wing nut job racist gun-loving woman hating baby killing war-monger!

        • Luke Visconti

          It should make you think, shouldn’t it? Who’s looking for solutions to nonexistent problems? Nobody.

          Who’s behind this effort? The billionaire oil-industry Koch brothers.

          Who do you hate because the billionaires are bamboozling you?

          BTW, nice fake name, jackass. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • In my state — Texas — the voter ID law is estimated to disenfranchise 600,000 voters. Voter fraud — on the other hand — is rare and usually involves political operatives manipulating absentee ballots, not the in-person voting targeted by these laws. The dubious benefit of voter ID laws simply do not outweigh the harm caused by disenfranchising hundreds of thousands of eligible voters.

  • Frankly I don’t see how a legal citizen can function in this country without an ID. I have been asked to produce an ID to: cash checks, buy alcohol, return merchandise, pick up medication & use a credit. I can’t imagine there’s anyone who doesn’t do one or more of these things. I don’t have a problem with being asked to produce my ID for any of these things let alone when voting.

  • Aren’t there some 12 million illegal immigrants in this country right now? I am certain that number of votes cast for Obama would sway the election in his favor. And I am equally certain no one would be prosecuted for voting illegaly in such an event.

    Separately, does any voter identification statute specify that it applies only to Blacks and Latinos? Is it racist because of disparate impact or something?

    Third, let’s get a taxpayer funded program in place to provide free identification to all US citizens. Let’s get this program to also pay for assistance to be provided in getting the required supporting documents – transportation, copies of birth certificates, notaries for notarized affidavits, etc. Whatever it takes.

    • Steve, there are many places, where, if you are known in the community,you don’t have to have an ID to do any of the items that you mentioned. Reread the article and “walk a mile in their shoes”. They are unable to easily get the documentation to get the required id and have no need for it in their daily lives……….

      • Luke Visconti

        I think ID is a red herring—it’s throwing us off the trail:

        1. I can find zero evidence of fraud being committed that rises above inconsequential. Therefore, the “franchise of voting” is NOT in jeopardy.

        2. An “any level” or “zero tolerance” argument is disingenuous because whatever fraud is being committed is not significant.

        3. Even if you’re concerned about a single false vote, one must consider greater harm. What is more important—hundreds of thousands of Americans voting or potentially stopping inconsequential voting fraud?

        4. “Potentially” is a key word—the honest people will still be honest, ­but why would an ID law change the behavior of people intending to defraud the voting process? Think about all the people arrested for producing false ID at college campuses—for drinking. Take a walk through certain neighborhoods and you’ll see SSI-document vendors peddling false identification. Forcing honest people to get identification changes nothing. Go back to point one.

        Bottom line is there’s no problem to be solved—except the problem that some people have of poor (non-white) people voting, a right which has been under attack since this nation was founded. This voter ID effort is all about racism and bigotry; it’s constructed to appeal to those who are fearful of the “other” Americans. It divides to conquer. I cannot imagine anything more anti-American than a group of people organizing to disenfranchise groups of Americans to serve their selfish interests. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

        • I can’t believe how skillfully the left has conceived and marketed this whole debate over voter ID. I must say they have out done themselves this time. If I were a person of color, or elderly, etc. I would be so totally offended by the notion that I was unable to secure a photo ID for myself. And offended even more so because the reason I can’t is because of the color of my skin or my age, or my income, etc. The idea that so many people have bought into this utterly ridiculous argument of the “poor and disenfranchised” unable to secure a photo ID is actually kind of sickening. You know who you don’t hear making this argument is the poor, disenfranchised person of color! Only the elitist who think they know what’s good for everyone else and always stroking their own egos by pretending to be more caring than the next guy when in fact what they are doing is disrespecting and putting down those they consider beneath them. Those they consider incompetent to do things any typical adult can do and most likely has already done! As if they have gone through their lives thus far with no photo ID. Maybe if you live like a troll under a bridge somewhere you have never needed an ID but most folks, even those that are poor, have no car, are black or Hispanic, are elderly, and whatever other labels have become the flavor of the day, have managed to get an ID despite all of their “inabilities” as you assume have disabled them in some way. ” I cannot imagine anything more anti-American than a group of people organizing to disenfranchise groups of Americans to serve their selfish interests.” This line you used, is exactly what I see you doing. And you say there are “hundreds of thousands”? Where? How many have you ever talked to or worked with? The funny part of all this is everyone thinks you are talking about “some other people”. No one thinks you are talking about them. Because when you live and work around the folks you are referring to, you realize they don’t think of themselves like you do. They don’t see themselves as you see them. Trust me, I know. So maybe go out and spend more then an hour in the areas you are so sure are filled with ‘hundreds of thousands” of people not capable of securing an ID. You are so sure all these folks exist, I just think someone forget to tell them! Give you fellow Americans a little more credit and quit dividing along lines of race, wealth, etc. Just because you’re poor doesn’t mean you can’t perform a simple task like securing an ID for yourself.

        • If someone can afford a fake ID they can afford a real one. How do these people get jobs without ID?

          • Luke Visconti

            Your answers can be found in the judge’s opinion. Inform yourself. This law excludes ID accepted for other purposes. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

    • Paul, you are exactly right. My idea was why don’t we take a half dozen failed federal programs and put that money into “everyone gets an ID-for free!” Of the thousands of do-nothing federal programs sucking up the money, take some of that money, get everyone an ID and just think of the great service you will be providing for these ‘hundreds of thousands” of people running around with no ID. Pick them up in a limo if need be! That way we can stop pretending there is no voter fraud, everyone gets and ID at no cost and we do something positive for the country and the hundreds of thousands of people who lives must be regularly disrupted because they have no ID. Now they won’t have all those others problems, right? Sounds like a win win to me!

      • “My idea was why don’t we take a half dozen failed federal programs and put that money into “everyone gets an ID-for free!””

        A little analytical thinking might help here. Read the original article. Read the part about how difficult it is for these people to get copies of “their papers”. Read the part about the money involved in getting “their papers”. Providing free IDs would not change any of these processes. It would still place the requirement on the people to do the leg-work and pay the money for it. And when it all comes down to it, we have this: voting is not an extremely important necessity for Americans. This is why the percentage of eligible voters who actually vote is so low. There’s only so much people are willing to do to exercise the right to vote. The hoops that you’re trying to place on poor people is simply more layers of disincentive. And really, how dumb do we have to be to not see the further layers of this reality: all of us who do vote know that when we reach the polling station, there are people with the address rolls of their districts. When the voter arrives, he or she says their name and the person at the polling station crosses the name off the list to indicate that person has voted. In order for a poor person to vote illegally, that person would have to be in collusion with the poller. Then that person would have to wait in line for hours, because we know that the system already makes it difficult for poor people to vote by having inadequately-resourced stations in poor districts. After waiting in line for hours, each one of these fraudulent voters would need to have colluded in advance with the poller to allow them to vote. A person who votes twice would have to wait in line for hours, then wait in line again for hours. Who on earth would do that in order to place one or two votes out of scores of millions? It’s clearly the most ridiculous of contentions, but FOX “News” enthusiasts are so darned easy to frighten.

  • Try to ignore the politics of this issue for a few moments and compare it to other less politically charged practices. We demand government issued photo ID’s for many (often less important) tasks than choosing our governmental leadership. There is usually no debate over requiring ID for these purposes. Should fraud in some of these areas occur, such as passing bad checks, it is sometimes correctable, and the money returned. However, given our secret ballot practice, actual correction of voter fraud is impossible. Once voter fraud is proven, if it is proven, it is too late, the ballot is permanently recorded, correction is impossible. I understand the crux of the argument is access of the right to vote versus preventing fraud. However, given that fraud is uncorrectable in this case, it would seem to me that we should err on the side of caution. While voting is a constitutional right, as a side note, would anyone really try to argue though that a government issued photo ID should not be required to purchase a firearm or else their second amendment rights would be infringed?

    • Luke Visconti

      “We should err on the side of caution”? There is NO significant voter fraud. These new laws disenfranchise poor, mostly Black and Latino, voters. Whose caution? What caution? Anyone else smell a bigot? Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

      • No, I don’t smell bigotry in Dave H’s post, but your willingness to attribute racist motives to his attempt to provide thoughtful comment captures the essence of bigotry. You do not deny that voter fraud exists, but you believe it not significant enough to risk possible disenfranchisement for people who will, for whatever reason, not pursue obtaining government provided identification that would allow access to the franchise. Thoughtful people, without ugly motives, can dispute your assertions.

        • Luke Visconti

          I don’t “believe” that voter fraud is insignificant–every study that I can find PROVES that voter fraud is insignificant. There is also plenty of evidence that the voter ID laws are targeting Black and Latino voters–like the threatening billboards that are springing up in poor areas all over swing-state cities. Your phrase “people who will, for whatever reason, not pursue obtaining government provided identification that would allow access to the franchise” is disingenuous and implies ill intent among those poor people affected by these new laws. There is no evidence that people don’t WANT government ID. For some people, the cost is prohibitive, and in some states, like Georgia, the timing of these laws coincided with the closing of motor-vehicles offices in poor areas. Finally, it’s not like I tapped either you or Dave and asked your opinion–you guys came on to this site and posted comments. I think people who present seemingly reasonable arguments while ignoring inconvenient facts on this subject are either intentionally ignorant or bigots. I don’t think either of you guys are ignorant, or you wouldn’t be on this site (because it’s clear you’re not regular readers). Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

          • Luke, they are some poor white folk as well. In this article, I believe it’s more social and age discrimination than racial. I was for the ID issue, until I read this article. I didn’t think of ederly folk not having birth certificates, etc. But, too me, it’s not a racial issue. Moreover, if someone disagrees with you – you call them a troll or bigot or racist. Get over yourself. Not everyone is a bigot or racist that disagrees with your articles. Seems too me you’re being the arrogant one.

          • Luke Visconti

            You’re right—there are plenty of poor white people impacted by this. But wealth correlates to race in our country. On a percentage basis, Black and Latino voters are impacted far greater than white people. Just do a web search and follow the trail to which states—and which political party—are pushing this issue … and make the oh-so-small-leap to a conclusion. Now, regarding your advice: Please have some concern for the bigots and trolls that regularly send us racist flames that we don’t publish. If I got over myself, where would those lonely bigots, homophobes, sexists and other trolls go? What would they do all day? Oh, the humanity. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

    • While you’re focused in on I.D’s only…I’m more concerned with closing of polling places in minority neighborhoods, early voting hours cut down or eliminated, college students no longer able to vote where they attend school, polling stations that have 30 parking spaces for 6k people…all of which are attached to these new voter id laws…so for me, showing a I.D. is far down on the list of things I find wrong about these new laws. I’m not sure if you knew these things about the law but if you did, I believe disingenuous is the word

      • Luke Visconti

        Thank you. These laws are not about ID. The pattern of abuses tells you that. Evil often cloaks itself in reasonable-sounding arguments. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • This material was not presented in a balanced way. Your biases are brought forward in the area of voter fraud and disenfranchised ethnic groups. It raises concern that your other opinions on diversity are based on rational thinking.

  • Luke, lighten up. Not everyone who disagrees with you is a bigot. No certainty of outcome-changing voter fraud does not necessarily mean that there has not been any — there may be a whole lot here that no one knows for sure. Some kind of ID card seems to me to be a reasonable solution. On the other hand, it is very troubling if the outcome of the proposed ID requirement is the disenfranchisement of voters, especially if it tends to change the outcome of elections. So clearly, the required ID would need to be reliable and yet easy to obtain, even by those who currently have the least acess to and need for an ID. Perhaps the too-often-silent moderates can find some room for compromise if we all cool the rhetoric and stop questioning each other’s motives.

  • Requiring voter ID in order to combat fraud assumes there is no problem with people obtaining counterfeit or fake IDs. There are more cases of fake IDs than there reported cases of voter fraud. Therefore, requiring ID as a solution seems like it adds a layer of fraud to the voting process.

  • Given the data which is supposed to be objective, the confirmed claims of voter fraud are statistically insignificant. So for those who support voter suppression for whatever reasons – racial, anti-immigrant, socio-economic classists, etc, it is still wrong. It’s merely a power play to usurp the institutional processes to take power for control purposes. What really makes me angry as a contractor working in various parts of the world to help “others” with Democracy and Governance on behalf of the USA, it feels as an American like “the cobblers’ children do not have shoes.”

  • Voter fraud is dismissed in this article as rare, when in truth no study can include all cases of voter fraud because not all are caught. The article rasies an intersting point to include fringe elements, but a lack of routinely collected and published data by election boards, county prosecutors, and state election agencies has made it difficult for scholars to conduct studies of voter and other forms of electoral fraud. As long as our head remains in the sand of the depth of the problem, asking for voter authenticity will be incorrectly treated as another demographically based scare tactic.

    • Luke Visconti

      You can’t prove there is a problem because there is no problem. It’s like asking, “When did you stop beating your dog?” Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • I think your argument is silly. Although what you say of the past may be true the argument that showing I’d to vote doesn’t hold water. You show I’d for every function in life today from writing a check, collecting any government service, going to a hospital, flying, etc. it doesn’t make sense to me that someone can not produce an ID.
    I believe your comment perpetuate racism and class division. Don’t assimilate because its racist. There isn’t a function provided by government to help someone get their ID? I am sitting in a room right now eating breakfast with 30 people of different ethnic orientation and everyone had to provide an ID to be here.
    Keep preaching your hate. I have seen a lot in my life and the one than stands out no matter how much things change the arguments never change. Keep preaching and keep preventing true equality.

    • Luke Visconti

      I have yet to hear one of these voter-ID proponents cite one study that shows there’s a significant risk of voter fraud. Yet I can find videos on YouTube of the Pennsylvania House majority leader admitting that ID laws are all about suppression of the vote for certain segments of our society.

      I also can never find a voter-ID supporter who is also in favor of having the vote be three or four days long; instead, people in favor of voter-ID laws are also connected with shortening voting hours. You also see the voter-ID laws in combination with the shortened voting hours in the states where oppression is the greatest—the latest of which is North Carolina, where the state government seems to have regressed right back to 1960. I remember very well that when Georgia implemented voter-ID laws, the state simultaneously closed the motor-vehicle offices in poor areas as a “cost-cutting measure.” The Tea Party suppressed the overt racist and bigoted signs and chants (“Kill him”), but it is still at work. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • This is truly ridiculous. Any amount of fraud is something we should protect against – it means there is a hole in the system and it needs to be fixed.

    I’ve lived in and around lower income neighborhoods my entire life and have yet to see anyone who didn’t have enough money or access to gain proper identification. Granted, some (very, very few) are so poor, they may have to give up something temporarily in which case there should be a way to help them.

    Show me someone in my local city who legitimately doesn’t have fair access to gaining proper identification, and I will pay for them to get it myself so they CAN vote.

    • Luke Visconti

      Name and address, please. Why limit your offer to your city? Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • If one is unable to obtain I.D., how do they obtain a Voter Registration Card? That has been a requirement at every polling place where I have voted, even without photo I.D. And I know that in order to register to vote I had to apply at the D.M.V.

    In my humble and unsolicited opinion, race baiting is as much, if not more, of a problem as racism in this country right now. “You think people should need I.D. to vote? You’re a racist!” No, you need I.D. to drive, fly, buy beer-why shouldn’t you need one to vote? And how have people paid taxes without ever having obtained I.D.? By the way, even if there is a generation that did not ever have to obtain I.D. to work, join the military, or go to school, that is no longer the case.

    • Luke Visconti

      “Race bating” seems to be the new phrase of the listeners of Beck, Limbaugh, et al. superseding hysteria over “the New Black Panther Party” and attempts to destroy Trayvon Martin’s character (as if the character of the dead victim was more important than the character of the police-wannabe murderer–or somehow was relative to being shot while carrying Skittles in his own neighborhood).

      By the way, check out the patterns of DMV offices being closed as voter-ID laws are enacted. Again, to all of the people who never read DiversityInc but come here as directed to submit a comment: There is no evidence of significant voter fraud. Logically, it doesn’t make any sense–the size of a conspiracy large enough to swing a local election makes secrecy impossible. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • TruthHurtsHuh

    “There is no evidence of outcome-changing voter fraud in America.”

    Unless we count the IRS manipulation of the 2014 Presidential election, and the measly 2% swing that could have changed the outcome, as a result. Oops…

    • Luke Visconti

      If you’re referring to Ohio, that 2 percent cited on extreme-far-right websites seems to refer to dead people still listed as voters. The problem for the 2 percent argument is that it quickly devolves down to less than two dozen fraudulent votes—including those by a woman who went to prison for voting fraud. So again, there’s no problem to solve—unless your problem is that you don’t want people to vote who are likely to vote Democratic. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • If requiring ID to vote is racist and suppresses the right to vote, then requiring ID to keep and bear arms is racist and suppresses the rights recognized by the Second Amendment. So when will you start challenging ATF rules requiring ID for purchasing guns?

    • Luke Visconti

      I am a master-rated rifleman, qualified expert pistol in the Navy and am pretty handy with a shotgun. I believe in the Second Amendment, but I feel the words “well regulated” in that amendment are to give latitude for regulation to keep firearms out of the hands of those who are not competent to handle them, including those who would harm themselves or others and people whose behavior in society would tell us that they are unstable or untrustworthy. I’m sure the framers would understand this reasoning and I’m surprised it seems so elusive. “Shall Issue” laws regarding concealed weapons are logical, as is forbidding a person under active mental-health care to possess a firearm—that’s “well regulated.” Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

    • Luke Visconti

      Because I’ve already responded to several comments just like yours. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • Really? I see how this is done here. Your way or the highway huh? Why not leave it posted so others can respond? Or are you the only one who can respond?

    • Luke Visconti

      I already responded, several times. And you’re right—it is my way or the highway around here.

      I’ll put it to you bluntly: There is no existing significant voter fraud. Voter-ID laws are about preventing poor Black and Latinos from voting. They’re pushed forward by people who stand by others calling our President a “subhuman.” You can tell this by what happens after voter-ID laws are passed. In Georgia, for example, they closed all the motor-vehicle offices in poor neighborhoods, which was the only convenient place where poor people could get a non-driver ID. Another thing about Georgia: It recently joined the states that offer a Confederate-battle-flag license plate; the other states are Alabama, Maryland, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. See a pattern here? Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

      • I acknowledge your right to manage your site as you see fit but if the only comments you like are ones that agree with you then why even have a comment section. The points of comments is to encourage discussion and allow readers to express their view hence the populist nature of the internet. I’m sure yo will rebuke for this but certainly you can see why comparisons to dictatorships who suppress opposition are being written.
        Having said that I certainly agree that suppressing the vote is wrong but I see no issue with taking proactive steps to prevent potential problems like fraud, we proactively take these steps in other areas of our lives eg insurance. But if we are to take measures to prevent potential fraud they should go hand in hand with ensuring underprivileged areas have better access and are equipped with the best possible voting devices. The reason I believe this is because I feel these are both equally bad problems (potential inequality and potential fraud) both worthy of being addressed. My point is I have no problem with the voter ID requirements in theory they just seem to be practiced incorrectly. Hopefully a balanced approach to the issues could perhaps help to move us past such decisive issues (I realize that this is diversity inc but I would prefer to live in a society that did not recognize race where as I feel diversity highlights our differences)

        • Luke Visconti

          The majority of comments to this website are hateful. Much of it is organized, and I’m not the tool of Hitler lovers, neo- Klan groups or “religious” gay bashers. You run your website any way you wish. My audience grows every month.

          As far as your prophylactic approach to voter fraud, hand over you car keys and all of your money. Odds are that you’ll get into an accident someday and spend your money foolishly. I want to protect society from your future behavior.

          There isn’t a single example of voter-ID laws being passed without harm to poor people. That’s due to ill intent by the Koch/Republican Party who want to control government to further their business and social-engineering goals. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

          • I’m sorry that you feel so many comments are hateful I was not trying to be that way. And it’s great that you’re getting followers I had never heard of this site until I did a id law search last night due to the elections and I was surprised by the harsh responses but if as you say it’s all hateful maybe it’s justified. Perhaps my comments were not clear. I was not saying that we should fear all potential risks I was just pointing out how in theory I do not find id requirements outrageous. I feel if these laws must be implemented then they are a good opportunity to help areas that are under served basically I’m saying if people intend to address one area of election issues they should address all of them. I saw recently that some states with voter if laws actually had higher turnout amongst minorities this could be due to the perceived threat of the laws creating greater incentive for them to vote just a guess. I think it was a map from the census bureau but I’m not sure I just briefly looked at it. If it’s true then would it not show that the laws achieved their stated goals without be overly discriminatory?

  • No, and you have not specifically responded to what I pointed out in your article. And I’ve read through all the comments and I didn’t see one post that addressed what I posted. Unless you delete all the comments that punch holes in you article, just like you did with mine :)
    If they are tax paying citizens (Which means they have a SSN), served our country and fought Wars, graduated from High School or got a GED they have more than enough “supporting” documentation proving their citizenship to be able to obtain a voter ID card in Texas and it N.C. They don’t need a Birth Certificate. If they are poor & old more than likely they are on Medicaid. In Texas they can use their Medicaid card to Obtain, along with one other Document to obtain a Voter card, which could even be their Federal parole or release certificate or their
    federal inmate identification card.

    If you were a fair moderator you would allow this post to go through. But I gotta hunch that it won’t though, just a hunch :) Come on, be a Man and post it and then punch holes in it.

  • Mr. Visconti, are you also opposed to requiring a valid Id to receive and use EBT/Food stamps?

    • Luke Visconti

      No, that is a benefit supplied by the government. Voting is a right guaranteed by the Constitution. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • Twice this article mentioned military service. I’m currently on active duty and I assure you that my social security number is required on nearly all my official documents. In years past, this may not have been true, but those individuals could use their service records to prove their identity or at least initiate the process. Instead of resisting, why not make a push to help those who need an ID card? Besides voting, nearly everything in modern time requires some sort of ID verification.

    • Luke Visconti

      That’s a really good point. It goes to intent. If this were really about voter ID, they would do just that. The opposite typically happens. For example, when Georgia implemented voter-ID laws, it closed motor-vehicle offices in poor neighborhoods. Many of the state initiatives are also combined with restricted voting hours as well.

      Let’s be clear: The intent of voter-ID laws is to prevent poor people from voting, because they usually vote Democrat. The last Presidential election hinged on a few counties—Cuyahoga County in Ohio was particularly important (remember Karl Rove’s temper tantrum on FOX when the network called Ohio for Obama?).

      When you think about it, you can bank online, make major purchases online, and even the process for obtaining a security clearance starts online. There’s no reason we can’t vote online—except for the elected politicians who are best served by having as few people vote as possible so it’s more efficient to curry your special-interest groups.

      Another way to know this is about intent is to look at the shape of congressional districts. They’re gerrymandered beyond all recognition. Congress has a 14 percent approval rating, but the re-election rate is 90 percent. We are losing our Republic. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • Before you shoot down this argument and call me a racist or bigot, I am a multiracial (white and Asian) background, and most of my family stems from illegal immigrants (They became legal after 20 years) (I am third to fourth generation) except my grandmother on my dad’s side. Anyways, even though you say voting fraud has no effect on the election, it is still unlawful to vote if one is not a US citizen. Even though it might discriminate, it is very hard to get by in this country without an ID. Even you say military does not require an ID to join, they do provide a Valid ID in all of the strict photo ID-required states, and all but Tennessee one can use an Employee ID (Although, Mississippi requires it to be a governmental issued employee ID). Many of the states allow a bank statement or a utility bill as a form of a valid ID. Even more so, opening a bank account, buying/renting a house or car, and applying for welfare, unemployment, jobs, health insurance, food stamps, fishing licenses, hunting licenses, getting married or getting on a plane, adopting a pet, purchasing alcohol, cigarettes, guns, and picking up prescription medication, as well as certain cold medication all require IDs. Also, by law, Obamacare requires everyone to have health insurance. However, health insurance requires an ID. So those people without an ID, are breaking the law.

    • Luke Visconti

      What you are has nothing to do with whether or not you are a racist or a bigot—or presenting a racist or bigoted argument. I wish people would stop using that kind of thing like Captain America’s shield.

      There are very specific laws uniquely for voter ID in states throughout the South. In most cases, there are purposefully a very limited number of photo identifications that qualify as photo ID. This is to put a burden on poor people, who are likely to vote for Democrats. Last week in Texas, a federal judge struck down what many people describe as the most restrictive voter-ID law in the country. She described the Texas law as a poll tax. According to The New York Times, there were only two convictions for in-person voter fraud in one 10-year period, so there was no reason in fact for a voter-ID law in the first place.

      Here is a link to Judge Ramos’ opinion. The judge gives quite an impressive history of racism in the state of Texas and how it affected voting—including white-only primaries until 1927 and political parties deciding who can vote, resulting in both parties spanning minority participation until the law was held unconstitutional in 1944. There were poll taxes and taxes until 1966 and a reregistration law until 1971. Texas circumvented that until 1982. Right up until present time, Texas has been found to have violated the Voting Rights Act with racially gerrymandered districts. Details can be found in her opinion. Please read it. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • I came to your site because having a state issued ID since 15, I only know my perspective. Too be honest, your personal opinion meant little to me – like mine, it was just another opinion, only punctuated by calling people who do not view the world the same as you racists. The link you provided regarding individuals in Wisconsin, however, was exactly what I needed to read to understand why some people view voter ID laws as being racist.
    I, for one, don’t care if voter fraud is significant enough to change the outcome of an election. One fraudulent vote is enough to change the outcome and effectively negate my own personal vote. That’s why I, personally was theoretically in favor of voter ID laws. It seems to me that if there was a public awareness drive/campaign to attain the goal of government issues ID’s for each and every citizen for a period of a couple years prior to any voter ID laws being enforced, it would achieve the stated goals of each side of the debate. As with other public services, ID’s would be free or low cost for those in financial need – and a period of more than a year would provide ample time for those with more complicated situations to properly identify themselves.
    You see, you begged the reader to walk a mile in another’s shoes, but are unwilling to take the intellectual steps yourself. From a non-racists perspective, I want every citizen of the United States to be able to vote – and to vote only once. I see now the examples of why a person might not have ID already – I want to help them attain this identification – not just to vote, but to also remove the many roadblocks not having an ID must have caused. I say let’s fix the problem of citizens of the USA not having ID, and when that is completed, let’s make sure each and every citizen’s vote counts the same.

    • Luke Visconti

      You’re incorrect. One fraudulent vote changes nothing. The fact is that there is no fraudulent vote problem—no election has ever been swayed by a fraudulent-vote effort. That’s preposterous to think that a national election could be swayed by an organized fraudulent-vote effort.

      Your wonderful thoughts about providing everyone an ID have NEVER been proposed by any Republican effort to require voter ID. In fact, if you read the judge¹s decision in the Texas case, you’ll see that the laws are often constructed to increase the difficulty of getting an ID. Further, in many states in which voter-ID laws are enacted, there is a simultaneous move to close DMV offices in poor areas. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • So… it’s racist because it prevents poor people from voting? I get it… You’re saying that poor people are all black or latino. That sounds kind of racist on your part.

    • Luke Visconti

      The intent of the laws is racist. According to Pew Research, Blacks have 1/20th the wealth of white households and Latinos have 1/18th the wealth. I’m curious why you’re shilling for the Koch billionaire point of view. Are you a billionaire, or just a chump? Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • So is it racist to require ID to buy a gun? You can use your same logic to say that one should be able to buy a gun with out ID. It’s my right to buy a gun just as it’s my right to vote. If making me show ID for one is racist, it’s racist for the other. So are you against requiring ID to buy a gun too?

    • Luke Visconti

      The Second Amendment includes “a well-regulated militia”—when written, the “militia” included all able-bodied male citizens. Well-regulated meant properly organized—with all non-personal weapons and powder stored in an armory. Read up on Lexington 1775 for context. In my opinion, in the modern era, well-regulated should include background checks (which require ID).

      The difference is that there’s a huge problem because “the militia” is not “well-regulated” today, which has resulted in mass murder by people who should never have had access to firearms.

      There is no significant voter fraud. The penalties are clearly enough of a deterrent.

      Before anyone tees off on me about guns, I am a master-rated high-power rifle shooter and earned an expert medal pistol shooting in the Navy. I was handy with a shotgun before my stroke and have high hopes as my left arm continues to improve. I shoot pistol with my right hand, always have. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

« Previous Article     Next Article »