Consider the facts
“You are entitled to your opinion. But you are not entitled to your own facts,” so stated Democrat Daniel Patrick Moynihan.
Known for his pithy comments, he was the only person to be appointed, in successive administrations, to the four presidential cabinets of Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, and Ford. Further from 1976 to 2000 he won four terms in the U.S. Senate from New York.
He would have understood that reasons for state or tribal issued photo identification cards, as the facts show, even without considering voting, every adult already has need for such identification.
At our local library, we have to show a photo ID, and one of three papers, showing residential address: utility bill, checkbook, or mail with a typed address to your residence to get a library card. These are required to check out materials, yet are not necessary to go to the library and utilize its resources.
Forms of photo ID include a driver’s license, a tribal card, a non-driver government-issued photo ID card, a military ID, a passport — any valid identification card with a photo of the person presenting the card. In other words, everyone can get a photo identification card. Back to the facts, there are no excuses for not doing so.
In addition to libraries, why do you need a photo ID card? To obtain items at a food bank; open a bank account; cash a check; donate blood; pick up a prescription; apply for Medicaid/Social Security/tribal benefits, drive, buy or rent a vehicle; buy alcohol or cigarettes; apply for a job or for unemployment; rent/buy a house or apply for a mortgage; fly on a commercial airplane; get married; apply for food stamps; apply for welfare; apply for a hunting or fishing license; adopt a pet; rent a hotel room; purchase a gun; buy a cell phone; purchase certain cold medicines; hold a rally or a protest, in some areas; if you win over a certain amount at a casino, a valid photo ID is needed to claim your winnings, and you have to fill out paperwork for tax purposes. If you live in Illinois, you have to show one to purchase Drano.
As you can see, this practical requirement runs the gamut of income levels and these are just what are necessary within the U.S.
Knowing of these times a photo ID is required — and there are others not detailed here — it is clear that requiring a photo identification to register to vote and to cast a vote is not a hindrance to anyone. The U.S. Constitution is clear that this is a state by state decision; it is not a federal one. As the 10th amendment states, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
Above all, it is the running for office and voting that are of utmost importance, starting with the local level.
Sanders is a national award winning columnist who can be reached through her website at peggysanders.com.
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