Thursday, October 3, 2013

University IDs May Still Need Changing, by William Ricioppo

If new voter ID laws are enforced, changes will come to the way Wisconsin universities design and issue student identification cards. Despite uncertainty over the law, state universities are considering redesigning their campus IDs to enable students to vote.
Although laws ro require a valid form of ID−one issued from a government agency and containing a photo, birth date, expiration date, name, and current address, including the residence during university year − have been gradually increasing since 2002, it wasn’t until late 2011 when resistance to new laws began to increase. Since then, several courts, including two in Dane County, have intervened with injunctions blocking the new legislation.
The laws require voters to produce a state-issued photo ID when registering or voting at the polls. Supporters say it will cut-down on fraud and ensure a voter is a legal citizen, the only common qualification to participate in an election. Those opposed claim the requirements are intended to exclude certain segments of the population−particularly minorities, the elderly, and students at temporary addresses−from the voting process, as large percentages of these groups do not possess photo identification, especially with a temporary address.

The controversy over voter ID laws is largely divided along partisan lines, with republicans being heavily in favor of the requirements while democrats are widely opposed.