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Senate Passes Photo ID Bill, Voters to Get Final Say

Sen. Ron Latz joined other DFLers in opposing the measure.

The Minnesota Senate on Friday paved the way for photo IDs to become a requirement at the polls on Election Day by passing a proposed constitutional amendment.

The question will now go on November's ballot to be decided by Minnesota voters. The Senate passed the bill 36-30, with Republican Sen. Jeremy Miller of Winona joining DFLers—including Ron Latz of District 44—in voting no.

The House passed its version of the bill after a Tuesday that spilled into Wednesday morning. Both of Senate District 44's House members—DFL Reps. Ryan Winkler and Steve Simon—voted against the proposal.

Because the issue is being handled as a proposed constitutional amendment, Gov. Mark Dayton would not get a chance to approve or veto the bill.

Republican supporters have argued that the bill would add integrity to Minnesota's voting system, while Democrats have said it is unnecessary and could disenfranchise some voters.

The bill passed by the Senate is slightly different than its House counterpart, the Star Tribune reports. It gives future legislators more wiggle room in using new technology at the polls—a cause that has been championed by Simon, who earlier this session proposed an electronic poll book option as an alternative to voter photo ID.

Matt Small March 31, 2012 at 09:44 PM
We need an ID to do everything else in this state. Why not require one to vote? It's not like people don't have one. Things you need an ID for: Driving, buying liquor, buying cigarettes, cash a check, rent an apartment, open a bank account, credit card, apply for welfare, apply for food stamps, buy a gun. buy a fishing license, buy a hunting license, Fly on a plane, go to a movie, get married, get a job, buy a bus ticket, buy a lottery ticket, pick up a prescription, pick up a package, get your utilities, get cable tv, go to school, rent a car, rent a hotel room, rent a tool from a home store, adopt a pet. But I don't need one to vote? Get real.
Derek Birkeland April 01, 2012 at 02:06 AM
Matt, Of course you need an id to vote. Do you read the English language? Have you read the current law? Have you read the proposed bill? One of the purposes of the law as it stands is that it flushes out those who attempt to vote in the wrong district.
Bruce Mackenthun April 02, 2012 at 02:08 PM
First to Dennis, What I see your reason for not supporting the bill is based on you not seeing a problem needing to be fixed. This leads me to believe you have no actual dispute with what the bill will do and have not shown any harm you think the bill could cause. Just because you( Dennis) have not see voter fraud does not mean we should not put measures in place to prevent them. Having integrity with the out come of our election is key to civility in our neighborhoods. Second, I agree that we do have many places that we must show a photo I.D. and Voting is the most important place of all of them. Last, I know people in other Countries that can't believe we don't have to show a photo I.D. to vote.They are losing respect for our country because they know what effect voter fraud has and how it can effect their lives.
Bruce Mackenthun April 02, 2012 at 04:27 PM
Dennis, You say my comments are littered with opinions and that is what they are. Your so called facts from a UK report are also just opinions. You have no facts that can show in Minnesota, asking legal Citizens for Photo I.D. will stop any legal citizen from voting. Fact: if Thomas Brady did show a valid photo I.D. to vote we would not have to wonder if he was real or not. Fact: the same old person you say can't vote because of Voter I.D. already can't fly on a commercial plane, nor in most libraries, check out a book. My opinion: Making sure that every legal vote cast is counted and stopping every illegal vote is more important than who can get a book from the Library. I have my opinion and you have yours. The voters will decide what way they will vote based on their opinion of the Facts.
Bruce Mackenthun April 02, 2012 at 07:03 PM
Nice job of avoiding answering my question and then trying to belittle me with comments about a subject I have never spoke about. Dennis, I see your from the mindset that if it has not been done before why should we do it. I'm glad others did not share your view like the one's that got rid of slavery, gave women the right to vote, and put voted I.D. on the ballot.
Bruce Mackenthun April 02, 2012 at 10:40 PM
I have a very good life. God has blessed me in many ways. Dennis, you have to answer one or more question before you can stop answering someone's questions(intelligence). Does someone have to be running against you to have a debate? Good evening to you!
Emily B April 03, 2012 at 08:16 PM
The "will" of the people is not always synonymous with "constitutional," "right" or "fair."
Emily B April 03, 2012 at 08:19 PM
As I've said other places, ALL of those other things are privileges NOT rights guaranteed by our US Constitution. Nothing should impede legal, legitimate voters from voting. This law not only requires IDs, but eliminated same day registration, which will prevent thousands of people from voting each year.

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