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November 6, 2012
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First time voter - Quite surprised

:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
So today was the first time I was allowed to vote in the US. I was at the polling place bright and early seeing a long line form down the road.

I made sure to bring my ID, since that's how we vote in Germany. When I wanted to hand my ID to the volunteer, she said that they had gotten instructions that they were not allowed to look at any IDs, but only to to ask a person's name, address, and date of birth (excluding the year).

I was quite shocked and mentioned that anyone with a phone book and access to Facebook could probably look up that information and vote as someone else. She shrugged.

Is this common practice in the US?
How is it done in your state?
What are your thoughts about it?
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Devious Comments

:iconelrotram:
elrotram Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
It differs from state to state, but no; generally, there is an ID check at the front door for the very reasons you mentioned.

In my state (RI) we do have a compulsory ID check at the door - plus a seperate "I registered to vote" card. But then again, RI is very much known for their illegal politicking. So what do I know?
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:iconscottahemi:
ScottaHemi Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
in my state all you do is show up, wright your name in the big book of registered voters, and BAM voting time. I did need my ID to register though... even though we don't have an ID law

and the ID amendment we had last night failed...
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:icontristancody:
TristanCody Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2012  Student Writer
In Germany, there is a mandatory ID given to citizens, no? Well, we do not have that in the US and that is most likely the reason why you did not see ID laws here.
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:iconwolfyspice:
WolfySpice Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
Hmm, interesting. In Australia (or Queensland at least) for the local, state, and federal elections, I didn't need to show anything. For the federal election a couple of years back, I just gave them my name, they crossed me off, and gave me some ballot sheets. For the local and state elections this year, I received two letters from the Queensland Electoral Commission, with a little portion to cut out with my details on. I just gave it to the volunteers at the polling place in my electorate, was crossed off, and given ballot sheets.

I suppose there's no need for ID. If you don't vote, you'll get fined. If you vote a second time, they'll know, so you'll either fail in fraud, or commit fraud and cop a fine (and later get hit hard for fraud). Plus, who the hell wants to go back a second time and be harangued by people handing out pamphlets?
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:iconzagstrike:
ZaGstrike Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
It's because in Germany there's a mandetory ID card issued to all civilians, while in America there isn't and the ID's asked for to vote are all optional ones.

Therefore, for an American to vote, they'd have to be forced to go through all the hassle of getting a valid ID simply to engage in their right to vote, rather than letting them have the choice of living without a passport/drivers liscense and still engage in voting.
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:iconlytrigian:
Lytrigian Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Most places do not require ID to vote, and it's a controversial issue. People don't want to have to show an ID they are not legally obligated to possess in to exercise a fundamental constitutional right.

It's becoming law in some states, but its far from universal. In some places which have passed voter ID laws recently, enforcement of them for this election has been blocked by courts, since there would not necessarily have been enough time for those who lack ID to obtain it.

Since government-issued IDs also usually cost money, there's a real question as to whether a requirement for ID amounts to a polling tax, and such taxes are generally illegal, not least because they've been used in the past to unequally deny the vote to poorer minorities.
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:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2012  Professional Photographer
IDs could be circumvented by the requirement to bring ones voter registration card. That would also make it much harder to just claim to be someone else.
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:iconlytrigian:
Lytrigian Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Maybe, maybe not. It doesn't have your picture on it.
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:icontheawsomeopossum:
TheAwsomeOpossum Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
Yes, it's common practice in the US. There is a debate about the law needing to be changed currently going on. The people for it argue, like you said, that voter fraud is very easy. The people against it argue that it would discourage people from voting since ID costs money and time and such.

So yes it's an issue, as to the solution; that's gonna have to be discussed.
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:icontbschemer:
TBSchemer Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
That's standard practice if the Democrats run your state. They're fans of voter fraud, because usually it helps them.
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:iconblack-allison:
Black-Allison Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
An American facebook friend of mine was once outraged that the law in his State suddenly required photo ID and here in Canada you need photo ID for anything legally abiding or deals with cash.
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Yeah... while I don't think in-person voter fraud is a problem (the problem is getting people to vote to begin with), I don't think getting an ID is a problem either, seeing as how in my state at least you need an ID just to live.

Seriously, you need an ID for just about every single thing involving getting money and storing money, and you also need it for porn, booze, or tobacco if you're into any of those things. So my concern if I didn't have an ID wouldn't be not getting to vote, it'd be not getting to do anything else either. I honestly don't get how all these people who supposedly don't have ID lived for so long without it to begin with, as a result.

I got my first ID when I was 16, and I got it because I was required to in order to be able to get my first job. It just seems like either a non-issue or also an issue for many relevant day-to-day things besides voting.
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:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
Addendum: A friend of mine just told me that what I was concerned would happen did indeed happen to her. When she showed up to vote, she was told that she already voted and couldn't vote again. She had to go back home and call some election office to be able to fill out a provisional vote. Inquiring if the false vote under her name would be deleted, she was told that they didn't know.
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:iconsnuffles11:
snuffles11 Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Well that's just fantastic. -_-
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:iconzcochrane:
ZCochrane Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Student Photographer
The basic reason is that americans feel something like the Personalausweis, i.e. a government-issued photo ID card that everyone is required to have, is a tool of totalitarian oppression. Following from that, people are free not to have government-issued photo ID, and since getting such (normally optional) ID can be a major hassle, many people feel that requiring it would disenfranchise those voters who don't currently have it. Those voters are predominantly older, poorer or minorities, all people who are more likely to vote democrat, so many see voter ID laws (which would require such a government-issued ID) as attempts to stop them from voting.
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:iconblack-allison:
Black-Allison Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
My mother once complained even in 3rd world communist shit holes she lived in had the common decency to issue an ID card so people won't pretend to be you to get extra rations.
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:icontortellinipen:
TortelliniPen Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
I wouldn't have a problem with voter ID laws, if ID laws were free and generally easy to get. However, I remember being pretty shocked when I had to pay upwards of thirty dollars for a terrible looking photo.

Well, some decades ago the poll tax was ruled unconstitutional. Look at it this way: If you need an ID to vote, and if you need to pay for an ID, then by extension you need to pay to vote.

Plus, it strikes a lot of people as awfully suspicious that conservatives are being hard on this now, before an important presidential election, especially since there are fewer documented cases of voter fraud than there are UFO sightings.
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:icontrorbes:
Trorbes Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
Suspicious? Let's not beat around the Bush; they know full-well that mandatory voter ID laws would disenfranchise members of majority-Democrat groups, and they know that pushing for it so close to the election will create tremendous uncertainty, with or without it passing. If they actually gave a damn about the integrity of the vote, one would think they'd be raising a fuss over voting machines changing people's votes - a story which seems to pop up every four years.
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:iconcouchycreature:
CouchyCreature Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
... is a tool of totalitarian oppression.

Hmm, weird. The idea that you need ID to buy booze or cigarettes, but not to vote, is very strange, but I think the US system is pretty strange in general.

Telling someone (electoral college) who you want in power and then trusting that they will concur with the majority decision is strange. It seems, in my mind to put an artificial and un-necessary layer into the process, that means that the people do not choose their leaders, a small group of generally unknown folk do.

Can someone tell me how the members of the electoral college are chosen?
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:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
The way Germany uses the "Personalausweis" is a form of government oppression, since failure to provide your ID at any point in time if requested even for no reason at all allows a government official to arrest you and lock you up for up to 48 hours.

In the US on the other hand, you can not be arrested for not having an ID. Getting an ID is also not a major hassle, as I mentioned to someone else, it took me about an hour including the wait. In the US an ID or proof of age is required for many things, such as buying alcoholic beverages, so there really isn't a significant number of legal residents that don't have one.
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:iconzcochrane:
ZCochrane Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Student Photographer
Actually, that's not true about Germany. You're required to have either a Personalausweis or a passport, but you're not required to take it along with you. It is true that the police can arrest you if they suspect you of a crime and you can't prove your identity easily, under [link] , but what you describe has no basis in law.

In the US, estimates range up to 10% of legal residents who do not have government-issued photo ID. I'd say that is significant.
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:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
From your link: "Der Verdächtige darf festgehalten werden, wenn die Identität sonst nicht oder nur unter erheblichen Schwierigkeiten festgestellt werden kann."

"The suspect may be taken into custody when the identity can not be confirmed or only under substantial hardship."

Ergo, when you can not prove you are who you are, you can be taken into custody. Substantial hardship is furthermore not defined. Custody for failure to identify can last for up to 48 hours till the end of the next day.

Since your link refers to the Strafprozessordnung (Code of Criminal Procedure), of course it mentions suspect of a crime, but in section 2 of that article it also mentions that you can be required to identify yourself even if you are not the suspect of a crime as long as it may help to solve a crime.

The actual law regulating IDs (Personalausweisgesetz) clearly states: "Deutsche im Sinne des Artikels 116 Abs. 1 des Grundgesetzes sind verpflichtet, einen Ausweis zu besitzen, sobald sie 16 Jahre alt sind... Sie müssen ihn auf Verlangen einer zur Feststellung der Identität berechtigten Behörde vorlegen."

"Germans according of article 116 paragraph 1 of the Basic Law are required to own an identification as soon as they are 16 years of age... They have to show it upon request to an authority entitled to confirm identification."

As for your opinion about the US, do you have any factual data to back this estimation up?
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:iconanatarakentara:
AnataraKentara Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thats how it was done in NYC.

It's to simple, but nothing can go really wrong, as 1) the majority vote means nothing to the Electoral, unless somehow you have an extreme numerical majority,
and 2) to do that, you'll need a lot of people who would be willing to fraud a big section of the populace to vote another party, which WILL be noted and possibly looked into.

So I wouldn't worry about it, but it would be nice to ID it all. Security, and all that.
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:icon5-7x28mm:
5-7x28mm Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
:shrug: I don't get it either. In Canada you need government ID, but here (NY) I just give them my name and address. I know there isn't a lot of (documented) voter fraud but it seems like something that should be a non-issue; state ID is not difficult to get and the notion that requiring it is partisan or racist is ridiculous.
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:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
I think the threat of voter fraud by not requiring an ID is greater than the potential that someone would not be able to vote because they don't have any type of identification.
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:iconanatarakentara:
AnataraKentara Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
You're in NY?

*Stalker moment*

*beat*

Awesomeness, I guess.
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:icon5-7x28mm:
5-7x28mm Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Yes, central NY, not the now-flooded lower cesspool. :lol:
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:iconanatarakentara:
AnataraKentara Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Oi.

I take offense to that.

I am not flooded.

Well, my mile fiefdom in this lower cesspool.
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:icon5-7x28mm:
5-7x28mm Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Sorry, the partially-flooded lower cesspool. :lmao:
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:iconanatarakentara:
AnataraKentara Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Aye, drinks and voting booths to that!
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:iconouroboroscobra:
OuroborosCobra Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
Actually, it can be very difficult to get. When my sister, who does not have a drivers license, wanted a state ID, we had to jump over hoops and yell at officials. They wanted a social security card, a passport, and at least one other form of identification on hand. That other form included baptismal certificate on the list, but then they would not except her Jewish naming certificate from when she was a baby.
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:icon5-7x28mm:
5-7x28mm Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
:shrug: I've gotten ID in Michigan and NY and both times it was idiot-proof. In MI I had a little trouble with one clerk who wouldn't accept my Canadian ID (the Michigan SOS says they accept any Canadian government-issue ID but they wouldn't accept my provincial ID or federal firearms license), so I asked for a supervisor and she cleared it up.
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:iconouroboroscobra:
OuroborosCobra Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
Question: Have you been sitting under a rock for the past year? Voter ID laws have been all over the news.
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:iconskulkey:
skulkey Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
in MA they just ask for your address and name. i don't really feel one way or the other about it.
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:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
Do they verify it in any way?

At the check-in in MD it looked like all the info they had was the name, address, and DOB (excluding the year).
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:iconskulkey:
skulkey Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
i don't know what they do, if anything. it's a small enough town that i doubt there's ever been an issue. i suppose if i went in and my name was already crossed out i could raise a stink... :shrug:
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:iconshidaku:
Shidaku Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
It depends on the state. Some states can check your IDs, some states WILL check your IDs, and some states really don't care.

Voting-booth fraud is fairly minimal compared to what the media makes it out to be.
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:iconpuppy-dangerous:
puppy-dangerous Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Artisan Crafter
What you need to vote is determined by state/local laws, most places still require a photo ID.
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:iconrockstar1009:
rockstar1009 Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Yep, that's the way it is here, too. Ohio doesn't seem to care that I am who I am. :shrug:
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:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
And Ohio is a swing state too, so a large enough group of people voting as someone else might actually swing the vote.
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:iconsonrouge:
sonrouge Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
To my knowledge, this isn't common practice in the US, nor should it be. In my state, you have to show photo ID, which is not that hard to get unless you're just that dumb.

As for my thoughts, I think it's become quite obvious that politicians could care less how they're voted into office, so long as they win. If they win because of fraud, well, no complaint that a monopoly on the use of force can't shut up.

Hell, it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest if, in the near future, we have goon squads standing outside of voting areas preventing certain people from voting. I certainly can't think of many politicians who would protest such behavior if it benefited them.
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:iconnokari:
nokari Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Interface Designer
Not everyone has it as easy as you when it comes to getting an ID. It took nearly 3 months for me to get my new CA license because the DMV wouldn't accept my faxed copy birth certificate I had had since the 90s, which led to my OR license expiring. I had to get 2 other people with their own valid photo IDs to come with me to a notary to get the birth certificate request form notarized. Then wait 2 weeks for the birth certificate to come in the mail and then go back to the DMV. All-in-all, it took nearly 3 months just to get a new ID. So don't act like it's always this super simple, quick process all the time and that anyone who doesn't get one quickly must be dumb. You've just never had to go through the real bureaucracy of the system.
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:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
Yeah, it's a shame that it's all about getting into office and not about doing the right thing.

What also disturbed me is that several people - one of them a known crook - were putting in votes and playing with the voting computers even before the doors opened (they opened a few minutes late and we were third in line).
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:iconsnuffles11:
snuffles11 Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
In my state, you have to show photo ID, which is not that hard to get unless you're just that dumb.

Poorer people who don't own cars or have easy transport find it difficult to get State ID for many reasons. DMV's are only open weekdays, they can't really take days off to get ID, and if they are given time to do it, they stand in line for hours on end. And if they don't have cars, they have to walk there, which lengthens their time commitment.

"Dumb" is hardly the problem in such a situation.
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:iconsonrouge:
sonrouge Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
Excuse me if after all the trouble I've put in to get to my fire tests and improve myself as a potential firefighter makes me view your sob stories as just that. If something is so goddamn important to people, they need to have the balls to put in the required actions to get it, not whine and expect mommy and daddy to hold their hand.

There are stories out there of people sleeping on the sidewalk for days or giving their last dime for bus far just to get a shot at a job, and you're giving me these sob stories about people having to do less than that just to get a picture ID? Seriously man, get a band-aid for that bleeding heart.
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:iconsnuffles11:
snuffles11 Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
In other words, they need to pay the price of the consequences of their actions. (Which is natural for any choice.)

And you see nothing wrong in increasing said consequences for those actions.
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:iconstevecaissie-stock:
SteveCaissie-stock Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
Can’t vote without government-issued ID in Canada, although I don’t think it has to be photo ID. I consider myself quite liberal in my views, but the notion that asking people to provide proof that they are who they say they are is somehow racist or elitist just baffles me. Is ID really so hard to come by in the US?
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:iconsvenler:
Svenler Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Professional Photographer
Not that I know. Took me about an hour to get mine (including the wait at the DMV).
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:iconsonrouge:
sonrouge Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012
It's politics, plain and simple. The fact that people who protest against needing a photo ID to vote aren't protesting against needing it for other things is all the proof needed.
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:icondivine--apathia:
divine--apathia Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
The American system seems fucked up. When I go into to vote, I say my name, and it's checked off.
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