South Carolina recently passed a law that requires voters to show a photo ID when they go to the polls, and we have said all along those who object to such a move are throwing a red herring into the equation. There’s certainly nothing wrong with having people prove who they say they are when they go to exercise the basic right of democracy, and the photo ID law does nothing to prevent people from voting or making it more difficult for them to do so.
But many states are now attempting to throw on additional voting requirements, and there is reason for concern. Many of these changes are being proposed in states that have newly elected Republican-controlled legislatures, and Democrats, of course, are crying foul. But the fact is that Democrats, when they have controlled legislatures, have pursued rules changes of their own. Both parties are continually trying to move into position to get more of their own voters to the ballot box.
Several states are moving to limit the number of days in which people can vote early. Democrats claim that favors Republicans because it’s easier for them to get to the polls, but we’re not sure we’re buying that argument. And other states are considering changes they think make it easier for special-interest groups to conduct voter registration drives and get people to the polls.
The bottom line is that this type of movement is just one more indication of how the two major parties in this country are continually jousting in an effort to gain an advantage. The problem is that voting in a reasonable manner should be available to everyone in this country and shouldn’t be subject to the whims of ambitious political professionals. Americans should be able to go to the polls in a reasonable manner and cast their ballots for the people they want to be their leaders, and political posturing should play no part in the process.