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NEW YORK -- A group of civil and voting rights organizations issued the following statement today urging the recently-formed Commission on Federal Election Reform to reject any consideration of a national voter identification card. The Commission, co-chaired by former President Jimmy Carter and former Secretary of State James Baker III, is expected to discuss a national ID card recommendation at their June 30 hearing at the Baker Center in Houston, Texas.
This an abridged version of the statement; the full text is available at www.demos.org/voterid. A list of experts available for comment follows the statement.
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We wish to express to the Commission our strong opposition to a national voter identification card system. The voting rights community believes that the adoption of a national voter ID card would likely result in the disfranchisement of millions of eligible voters and risk undermining basic privacy protections that are the hallmarks of American citizenship. In addition, a national voter ID card would prove exceedingly complex, costly and burdensome to implement and maintain.
Indeed, a national voter ID card would only frustrate the advances that Congress sought to achieve with the enactment of the Help America Vote Act of 2002. We urge the Commission to reject consideration of a national voter ID card system.
We oppose a national voter ID card for the following reasons:
A national voter ID card is a remedy in search of a problem. Proponents of voter ID requirements often argue that they are necessary to prevent voter fraud. The fact is there is zero evidence of widespread fraud among voters …