This publication is your
opportunity to receive regular updates on
the work and the issues that I have been
involved with, both in Harrisburg and
throughout our community.
Please visit my website,
where you will find a comprehensive overview
of our work, various phone numbers and
contact information to assist you in solving
problems, opportunities to volunteer and
assist us in our programs and opportunities
to give your feedback.
LEGISLATIVE ALERT! LEGISLATIVE ALERT!
Senate to Vote on H.B. 934 - Voter ID Bill Today
House Bill 934, the so-called Voter I.D. Bill is up for a vote by the full Senate today. This bill would require all voters to show a government-issued photo ID before they could cast a ballot.
This bill would cost the state millions of dollars and place a significant burden on Pennsylvania counties who manage local elections. If enacted, this bill will cost between $4 million and $11 million in its first year for Voter ID cards, lost revenue to PennDOT, voter education, voter notification, equipment and staff.
Under the guise of preventing voter fraud, this bill would actually disenfranchise many eligible voters. It would suppress the right to vote for many Pennsylvanians by essentially making it harder to vote for individuals who do not have a photo ID.
- 340,000 Pennsylvania seniors do not have a state-issued photo I.D. In addition, minorities, the disabled and young people will be disproportionately impacted.
- Many individuals do not have a photo ID because of the cost. Some elderly have stated that they do not have the proper documentation needed to obtain a photo ID.
- In the 2008 election, there were only 4 cases of voter fraud reported in Pennsylvania, out of the 8.73 million registered voters.
- A national study conducted by President George Bush’s Justice Department found only 86 cases of fraud in the United States between 2002 and 2007 out of 300 million votes cast.
- Here in Pennsylvania, since 2004 we’ve cast 20 million votes and had 4 convictions for fraud.
- In Ohio, a statewide survey found four instances of ineligible persons voting or attempting to vote in 2002 and 2004, out of over 9 million votes cast.
- In Missouri, of the 2.3 million votes cast in 2000, only 6 substantiated instances of ineligible voters were uncovered.
- In Wisconsin, 7 cases of voter fraud were found out of 3 million votes cast during the 2004 election.
- Research suggests that voters are 39 times more likely to be struck by lightning than commit voter fraud at the polls.
HB 934 is a costly solution, looking for a virtually non-existent problem.
The sad fact is that this bill isn’t about protecting the integrity of elections, it’s about disenfranchising people and suppressing voter turnout, plain and simple.
Let’s call this what it is, a thinly veiled attempt by Republicans to drive down voter turnout for this November’s presidential election. Just another part of the Republican Party's national agenda that has now come to Pennsylvania.
This bill will take away the constitutional right to vote of hundreds of thousands of voters. It is shameful and unwarranted, especially in light of the need for solutions to much larger issues, like job creation and growing Pennsylvania’s economy.
With very little evidence of voter fraud, this bill is completely unnecessary. I urge you to contact your local legislator and the governor and voice your concerns and opposition related to this misguided legislation.
You can find out more specifics about the 2012-13 State Budget and provide your feedback on my website at senatorhughes.com as well as on Facebook and Twitter (@SenatorHughes).
Offices of State
Senator Vincent Hughes