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November 6, 2012


Replies: 85

First time voter - Quite surprised

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

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?
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...
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
Lytrigian Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Maybe, maybe not. It doesn't have your picture on it.
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.
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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