According to a November 7th Harvard Crimson article, Voter Suppression 101,
The vast majority of these new voter restrictions are passed by Republican state legislatures, and it is no coincidence that the voters that are disenfranchised by these laws are poor, minority, and disabled voters, also known as the Democratic base. To get a sense of the tangible impact of the laws, 21 million Americans do not have government-issued photo identification. This includes 25 percent of African-American voting-age citizens, as opposed to eight percent of white citizens, and 15 percent of voters earning less than $35,000, “more than twice” as many as citizens who earn more than $35,000. [Also see The Republican Threat to Voting, NYT]So, here is the NCSL's most recent survey of I.D. requirement laws and proposals. It's chart at the end provides details about each state's provisions (Updated September 8
Thirty states require all voters to show ID before voting at the polls. In 14 of these, the ID must include a photo of the voter; in the remaining 16, non-photo forms of ID are acceptable. Voter ID laws can be broken down into the three following categories:
- Strict Photo ID (7 states): Voters must show a photo ID in order to vote. Voters who are unable to show photo ID at the polls are permitted to vote a provisional ballot, which is counted only if the voter returns to election officials within several days after the election to show a photo ID. At the beginning of 2011, there were just two states--Georgia and Indiana--with strict photo ID laws. Two states--Kansas and Wisconsin--passed new strict photo ID laws this year, and three states with non-photo ID laws--South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas--amended them to make them strict photo ID laws. None of these new laws is in effect yet, although they likely will be before the 2012 elections. See the notes below Table 1 for more information regarding effective dates for new legislation.
- Photo ID (7 states): Voters are asked to show a photo ID in order to vote. Voters who are unable to show photo ID are still allowed to vote if they can meet certain other critieria. In some states, a voter with ID can vouch for a voter without. Other states ask a voter without ID to provide personal information such as a birth date, or sign an affidavit swearing to his or her identity. Voters without ID are not required to return to election officials after the election and show a photo ID in order to have their ballots counted in the manner that voters without ID in the strict photo ID states are. The seven states with photo ID laws are Alabama, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Louisiana, Michigan and South Dakota.
- Non-Photo ID (16 states): All voters must show ID at the polls. The list of acceptable IDs is varied and includes options that do not have a photo, such as a utility bill or bank statement with the voter's name and address.
Table 1. State Requirements for Voter Identification
States that Request or Require Photo ID
States that Require ID (Photo Not Required)
Strict Photo ID
(1) The Kansas law takes effect January 1, 2012.
(2) In Alabama, South Carolina and Texas, current non-photo voter ID laws stay in effect for the time being. The new photo voter ID requirements will take effect after receiving preclearance from the U.S. Department of Justice under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.
(3) Tennessee's new photo ID requirement takes effect January 1, 2012. Until then, the existing non-photo ID requirement remains in effect.
(4) Poll workers in Wisconsin will begin asking voters to present ID immediately, but voters will not be required to present ID until the February 2012 spring primary election.
(5) There are some who prefer to call Oklahoma a photo voter ID state, because most voters will show a photo ID before voting. However, Oklahoma law also permits a voter registration card issued by the appropriate county elections board to serve as proof of identity in lieu of photo ID.
(6) Rhode Island's new non-photo ID requirement takes effect January 1, 2012. On January 1, 2014, a photo ID requirement will replace the non-photo ID law.
(7) Alabama's new photo ID requirement takes effect with the 2014 statewide primary election. The new law also requires preclearance from the U.S. Department of Justice. The delayed implementation date was intended to ensure that the timing of preclearance did not occur between the primary and general elections of 2012, thus creating voter confusion.
New Voter ID Proposals
These 20 states did not have laws requiring voter ID at the polls at the beginning of 2011, but saw legislation proposing it this year. So far, two states have enacted new voter ID requirements--Kansas and Wisconsin. Governors in Minnesota, New Hampshire and North Carolina vetoed voter ID bills in 2011. In Minnesota, supporters have vowed to pass a new bill in next year's session that would bypass the governor and go to the voters for approval instead. This strategy is similar to what the Oklahoma legislature in 2009 and 2010. Mississippi voters will weigh in on a citizen initiative proposing voter ID in November 2011.
- California--AB 663 and 945: failed
- Illinois--HB 3058 and SB 2035: adjourned; carried over to 2012 session
- Iowa--HF 8, HF 95, SF 142: adjourned; carried over to 2012 session
- Kansas--HB 2067: enacted
- Maine--LD 199: adjourned; carried over to 2012 session
- Maryland--HB 288 and 701: failed
- Massachusetts--multiple bills: all pending in joint committee
- Minnesota--SB 509: vetoed
- Mississippi--multiple bills: all failed
- Nebraska--LB 239 and 605: adjourned; carried over to 2012 session
- Nevada--SB 373 failed
- New Hampshire--SB 129: vetoed
- New Jersey--A 1725: pending in assembly
- New Mexico--HB 308, HB 577, SB 363: failed
- New York--multiple bills: carried over to 2012 session
- North Carolina--HB 351: vetoed
- Pennsylvania--HB 934: passed house; pending in senate
- Rhode Island--SB 400/HB 5680: enacted
- West Virginia--HB 3219: failed
- Wisconsin--AB 7: enacted
At the beginning of 2011, 27 states had non-photo voter ID laws. Fourteen of these 27 considered legislation this year to require photo ID at the polls. So far, four states--Alabama, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas--have enacted strict photo ID requirements. The new laws in Alabama, South Carolina and Texas can't take effect until they receive pre-clearance from the U.S. Department of Justice. Governors in Missouri and Montana vetoed stricter voter ID laws in 2011.
- Alabama--HB 19: enacted
- Alaska--HB 162: adjourned; carried over to 2012
- Arkansas--HB 1797: failed
- Colorado--HB 1003: failed
- Connecticut--HB 5231, SB 604 and 647: failed
- Delaware--HB 199 and HB 200; adjourned; carried over to 2012
- Hawaii--HB 1359: adjourned; carried over to 2012
- Missouri--SB 3: vetoed and SJR 2: approved (must be approved by voters in November 2012 before it takes effect)
- Montana--HB 152: vetoed
- Ohio--HB 159: passed house; pending in senate
- South Carolina--HB 3003: enacted
- Tennessee--SB 16: enacted
- Texas--SB 14: enacted
- Virginia--multiple bills: failed
- 2010: New voter ID law passed in Idaho; Oklahoma voters approved a voter ID proposal placed on the ballot by the Legislature
- 2011: New voter ID laws passed in Kansas, Rhode Island and Wisconsin. Alabama, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas tightened existing voter ID laws to require photo ID (new laws in Texas and South Carolina are on hold pending USDOJ preclearance). Governors in Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire and North Carolina vetoed strict new photo ID laws in 2011.
Table 2: Details of Voter Identification Requirements
Acceptable Forms of ID
Voters Without ID
NOTE: AL's new photo ID law is scheduled to take effect for the 2014 primary election. It also requires preclearance by the USDOJ.
Each elector shall provide identification to an appropriate election official prior to voting.
Each elector shall provide valid photo identification to an appropriate election official prior to voting.
Vote a challenged or provisional ballot or vote, if s/he is identified by two poll workers as an eligible a voter on the poll list, and both poll workers sign the voting sign-in register by the voter’s name.
Vote a provisional ballot or vote a regular ballot if s/he is identified by two election officials as an eligible a voter on the poll list, and both election workers sign a sworn affidavit so stating.
Before being allowed to vote, each voter shall exhibit to an election official one form of identification.
An election official may waive the identification requirement if the election official knows the identity of the voter. A voter who cannot exhibit a required form of identification shall be allowed to vote a questioned ballot.
Every qualified elector shall present one form of identification that bears the name, address and photograph of the elector or two different forms of identification that bear the name and address of the elector.
An elector who does not provide the required identification shall receive a provisional ballot. Provisional ballots are counted only if the elector provides identification to the county recorder by 5pm on the fifth business day after a general election that includes an election for federal office, or by 5pm on the third business day after any other election.
Election officials shall request the voter to provide identification
If a voter is unable to provide this identification, the election official shall indicate on the precinct voter registration list that the voter did not provide identification. Following each election, the county board of election commissioners may review the precinct voter registration lists and may provide the information of the voters not providing identification at the polls to the prosecuting attorney, who may investigate possible voter fraud.
§1-1-104(19.5) and 1-7-110
Any eligible elector desiring to vote shall show his or her identification as defined in section 1-1-104 (19.5).
An eligible elector who is unable to produce identification may cast a provisional ballot.
Elector must mail a photocopy of identification to county clerk in order to have provisional ballot counted. (this paragraph added following a Feb. 2006 conversation with an election official; NCSL staff unable to verify this in CO statutes or rules)
Each elector shall present identification
Elector shall, on a form prescribed by the Secretary of the State, write the elector's residential address and date of birth, print the elector's name and sign a statement under penalty of false statement that the elector is the elector whose name appears on the official checklist.
Tit. 15, §4937
A voter, upon entering the room where an election is being held, shall announce his or her name and address and provide proof of identity
In the event the voter does not have proof of identity with them, he or she shall sign an affidavit of affirmation that he or she is the person listed on the election district record.
The clerk or inspector shall require each elector, upon entering the polling place, to present a current and valid picture identification as provided in s. 97.0535(3)(a). If the picture identification does not contain the signature of the voter, an additional identification that provides the voter's signature shall be required.
If the elector fails to furnish the required identification, the elector shall be allowed to vote a provisional ballot. The canvassing board shall determine the validity of the ballot by determining whether the elector is entitled to vote at the precinct where the ballot was cast and that the elector had not already cast a ballot in the election.
Each elector shall present proper identification to a poll worker at or prior to completion of a voter's certificate at any polling place and prior to such person's admission to the enclosed space at such polling place.
If you show up to vote and you do not have one of the acceptable forms of photo identification, you can still vote a provisional ballot. You will have up to two days after the election to present appropriate photo identification at your county registrar's office in order for your provisional ballot to be counted.
Every person shall provide identification if so requested by a precinct official.
Pollworkers request photo ID with a signature. Acceptable types of ID are not specified by law.
If the voter has no identification, the voter will be asked to recite his/her date of birth and residence address to corroborate the information provided in the poll book.
§34-1106(2), 34-1113, 34-1114
Each elector shall show a valid photo identification or personal identification affidavit.
A voter may complete an affidavit in lieu of the personal identification. The affidavit shall be on a form prescribed by the secretary of state and shall require the voter to provide the voter's name and address. The voter shall sign the affidavit. Any person who knowingly provides false, erroneous or inaccurate information on such affidavit shall be guilty of a felony.
§3-5-2-40.5, 3-10-1-7.2 and 3-11-8-25.1
A voter who desires to vote an official ballot at an election shall provide proof of identification.
A voter who votes in person at a precinct polling place that is located at a state licensed care facility where the voter resides is not required to provide proof of identification before voting in an election.
Specific forms of ID are not listed in statute. ID must be issued by the state of Indiana or the U.S. government and must show the following:
Voters who are unable or decline to produce proof of identification may vote a provisional ballot. The ballot is counted only if (1) the voter returns to the election board by noon on the Monday after the election and: (A) produces proof of identification; or (B) executes an affidavit stating that the voter cannot obtain proof of identification, because the voter: (i) is indigent; or (ii) has a religious objection to being photographed; and (2) the voter has not been challenged or required to vote a provisional ballot for any other reason.
§25-2908, 25-1122, 25-3002, and 8-1324(g)(2)
Takes effect January 1, 2012.
Each person desiring to vote shall provide a valid form of identification. The following are exempted from the ID requirement:
|The following forms of identification are valid if they contain the name and photograph of the voter and have not expired. Expired documents are valid if the bearer is aged 65 or older.|
A voter who is unable or refuses to provide current and valid identification may vote a provisional ballot.
In order to have his or her ballot counted, the voter must provide a valid form of identification to the county election officer in person or provide a copy by mail or electronic means before the meeting of the county board of canvassers.
Election officers shall confirm the identity of each voter by personal acquaintance or by a document.
When the officers of an election disagree as to the qualifications of a voter or if his right to vote is disputed by a challenger, the voter shall sign a written oath as to his qualifications before he is permitted to vote.
Each applicant shall identify himself, in the presence and view of the bystanders, and present identification to the commissioners.
If the applicant does not have identification, s/he shall sign an affidavit to that effect before the commissioners, and the applicant shall provide further identification by presenting his current registration certificate, giving his date of birth or providing other information stated in the precinct register that is requested by the commissioners. However, an applicant that is allowed to vote without the picture identification required by this Paragraph is subject to challenge as provided in R.S. 18:565.
Each voter must show a photo ID or sign an affidavit attesting that he or she is not in possession of photo identification.
A voter who does not possess either of the above may show any of the following, as long as they are current:
An individual who does not possess, or did not bring to the polls, photo ID, may sign an affidavit and vote a regular ballot.
Before receiving a ballot, voters shall establish their identify and eligibility to vote at the polling place by presenting a form of personal identification.
If an individual does not possess any of these forms of identification, s/he may still cast a ballot if two supervising election judges, one from each major political party, attest they know the person.
Before an elector is permitted to receive a ballot or vote, the elector shall present to an election judge a current photo identification showing the elector's name. If the elector does not present photo identification the elector shall present one of several specified documents showing the elector’s name and current address.
If the identification presented is insufficient to verify the elector's identity and eligibility to vote or if the elector's name does not appear in the precinct register, the elector may sign the precinct register and cast a provisional ballot.
Before delivering a ballot to an individual, the poll clerks shall request the individual to show identification.
If an individual offering to vote does not have or refuses to show an appropriate form of identification, the individual may be allowed to vote without being challenged if the individual provides to the election board the individual's date of birth and if a member of the election board or a clerk knows the individual and can personally vouch that the individual is a qualified elector of the precinct. Otherwise, the individual may vote as a challenged voter by executing an affidavit that the challenged individual is a legally qualified elector of the precinct.
§3503.16(B)(1)(a) and 3505.18(A)(1)
All voters must provide to election officials at the polling place on the day of an election proof of the voter's identity. Also applies to voters requesting and voting an absentee ballot.
A voter who has but declines to provide identification may cast a provisional ballot upon providing a social security number or the last four digits of a social security number. A voter who has neither identification nor a social security number may execute an affidavit to that effect and vote a provisional ballot. A voter who declines to sign the affidavit may still vote a provisional ballot.
26 O.S. 2001, §7-114
Each person appearing to vote shall provide proof of identity.
"Proof of identity" shall mean a document that satisfies the following:
A person who declines or is unable to produce proof of identity may sign a statement under oath swearing or affirming that the person is the person identified on the precinct registry and cast a provisional ballot.
NOTE: RI's new voter ID law takes effect in two stages. The first stage will require non-photo ID beginning Jan. 1, 2012. The second stage will require photo ID beginning Jan. 1, 2014.
Effective January 1, 2012:
Any person claiming to be a registered and eligible voter who desires to vote at a primary, special or general election shall provide proof of identity.
Effective January 1, 2012:
A valid and current document showing a photo of the person to whom it was issued, including:
A valid and current document without a photograph, including:
Effective January 1, 2012:
If the person claiming to be a registered and eligible voter is unable to provide proof of identity as required, the person shall be allowed to vote a provisional ballot pursuant to section 17-19-24.2. The local board shall determine the validity of the provisional ballot pursuant to section 17-19-24.3.
Summary of section 17-19-24.3:
The local board shall examine each provisional ballot application to determine if the signature matches the signature on the voter's registration. If the signatures match, the provisional ballot shall count. If the signatures do not match, the ballot shall not count and shall be rejected as illegal.
NOTE: SC's new photo ID law takes effect after preclearance by the USDOJ.
When any person presents himself to vote, he shall produce his valid South Carolina driver’s license or other form of identification containing a photograph issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles, if he is not licensed to drive, or the written notification of registration.
When a person presents himself to vote, he shall produce a valid and current ID.
Voters without ID may be permitted to vote a provisional ballot. This varies from county to county. Whether the provisional ballot is counted is at the discretion of the county commissioners at the provisional ballot hearing.
If the elector cannot produce identification, he may cast a provisional ballot that is counted only if the elector brings a valid and current photograph identification to the county board of registration and elections before certification of the election by the county board of canvassers.
§12-18-6.1 and 6.2
When a voter is requesting a ballot, the voter shall present a valid form of personal identification.
If a voter is not able to present a form of personal identification as required, the voter may complete an affidavit in lieu of the personal identification. The affidavit shall require the voter to provide his or her name and address. The voter shall sign the affidavit under penalty of perjury.
NOTE: TN's new photo ID law takes effect January 1, 2012.
A voter must sign an application for a ballot. The voter's signature and information on the signature list is compared with other evidence of identification supplied by the voter.
Each voter shall present to the precinct registrar one form of identification that bears the name and photograph of the voter.
If a voter is unable to present any evidence of identification, the voter shall be required to execute an affidavit of identity on a form provided by the county election commission.
If a voter is unable to present the proper evidence of identification, then the voter will be entitled to vote by provisional ballot in the manner detailed in the bill. The provisional ballot will only be counted if the voter provides the proper evidence of identification to the administrator of elections or the administrator's designee by the close of business on the second business day after the election.
Election Code §63.001 et seq.
NOTE: TX's new photo ID law takes effect after preclearance by the USDOJ.
On offering to vote, a voter must present the voter’s voter registration certificate to an election officer at the polling place.
On offering to vote, a voter must present to an election officer at the polling place one form of identification.
Voter registration certificate
A voter who does not present a voter registration certificate when offering to vote, but whose name is on the list of registered voters for the precinct in which the voter is offering to vote, shall be accepted for voting if the voter executes an affidavit stating that the voter does not have the voter’s voter registration certificate in the voter’s possession and the voter presents other proof of identification. A voter who does not present a voter registration certificate and cannot present other identification may vote a provisional ballot. A voter who does not present a voter registration certificate and whose name is not on the list of registered voters may vote a provisional ballot.
A voter who fails to present the required identification may cast a provisional ballot. The voter must present, not later than the sixth day after the date of the election, the required form of identification to the voter registrar for examination OR the voter may execute, in the presence of the voter registrar, an affidavit under penalty of perjury stating that the voter has a religious objection to being photographed or that the voter does not have identification as a result of a natural disaster declared by the president or the governor which occurred not earlier than 45 days before the date the ballot was cast.
A voter shall present valid voter identification to one of the poll workers.
The voter may cast a provisional ballot as provided by §20A-3-105.5
The officer shall ask the voter to present any one of the specified forms of identification.
If a voter is entitled to vote except that he is unable to present one of the forms of identification listed above, he shall be allowed to vote after signing a statement, subject to felony penalties for false statements, that he is the named registered voter who he claims to be.
Any person desiring to vote at any primary or election is required to provide identification to the election officer before signing the poll book.
Any individual who desires to vote in person but cannot provide identification as required by this section shall be issued a provisional ballot.
NOTE: While poll workers will begin asking for ID immediately, voters are not required to show it until the February 2012 spring primary election.
Each elector shall be required to present identification.
If the ID presented is not proof of residence,the elector shall also present proof of residence.
An elector who appears to vote at a polling place and does not have statutory ID shall be offered the opportunity to vote a provisional ballot.
An elector who votes a provisional ballot may furnish statutory ID to the election inspectors before the polls close or to the municipal clerk no later than 4 pm on the Friday following Election Day.