NTF issue paper: legwatch9.doc. 1-20.

. Conservative Nebraska state senators and constitutional conservatives for several years have attempted to pass a substantive voter ID bill, to no avail because of liberal opposition. 36 states (one temporarily enjoined), including adjacent Kansas and South Dakota, currently require voters to present a form of personal ID at the polls. Conservative State Sen. Andrew La Grone, with 13 co-sponsors, has introduced LR 292CA. His constitutional amendment would stop voter fraud and ensure the integrity of NE elections by requiring poll workers to see a photo or digital image of voters to verify their identification prior to voting in person. The resolution will not disenfranchise 1 voter. The Legislature will provide specifications for this process and exemptions. NE Sec. of State Bob Evnen announced an emphasis on implementing such resolution after passage.

. Fraud occurs when someone illegally uses the vote of a recently-deceased person, someone who has moved away, or someone who never votes. Illegal aliens fraudulently vote, using phony or stolen ID. Counties have discovered instances in which there are more listed voters on the rolls that voting age residents. This resolution would prevent voter impersonation. It provides a precise way to document who casts ballots and prevents an individual from voting who already voted by mail. Former Kansas Sec. of State Kris Kobach presented his legislature with 221 incidents of state vote fraud, including absentee ballot fraud, impersonation, and other crimes. Most never investigated, because county attorneys lack the time and resources to pursue vote fraud at the expense of other criminal investigations. Of 30 cases fully investigated, 7 prosecutions all resulted in convictions. Comparing the number of reported cases of vote fraud to the total number of votes cast in an election is flawed. Most forms of such fraud are difficult to detect with present laws, so we see a tip of an iceberg. The relevant question to ask is if the number of illegal votes exceeds the margin of victory in a race. Kobach alluded to a brazen case in a race for state representative in Kansas City, MO. One candidate gleaned 50 votes illegally cast by Somali refugees who could not speak English. They received coaching at a polling place to vote for that candidate, who won by 1 vote. Recall that 2 alien Somalis voted in a 2016 NE election. An examination by Minnesota Majority discovered that 341 felons in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area illegally voted. Compared to the 2.7 million votes cast for Senate, that number may seem small. However, leftist Al Franken won that election by only 312 votes. More states are moving to ensure the integrity of the voting process by requiring photo IDs, not as part of a devious plot to discourage voting, but because voter fraud is a real problem (Pons-Cantoni, National Bureau of Economic Research, Feb. 2019).1 Such a law guarantees one person one vote.

. When voter fraud occurs, it dilutes the votes of all legal voters. The resolution would increase NE voter confidence in our electoral process, an essential element in a stable democracy. Providing ID offers voters a sense of pride, holding tangible proof that they have the right to vote. A photo or digital ID offers poll workers more assurance that an individual has the right to vote. There is no way to analyze precisely how much voter fraud exists now in NE, because there exists no means to determine how rampant. An individual currently can falsely vote by using a voter valid name and address, to the chagrin of the legal voter who arrives to vote later and faces refusal. NE vote fraud reaches back to territorial days, when the U.S. Congress voided a vote for NE territorial governor because of systemic vote fraud.

. A 2016 Gallup Poll found that 80% favor requiring all voters to provide photo ID before voting. A Texas Lyceum 2019 poll discovered 81% of Texans endorsed voter ID, including 72% of Democrats. According to a 2010 Survey USA poll, 85% of 500 Kansans supported photo ID laws.

. Leftist groups Civic NE, NE Appleseed, and League of Women Voters all oppose this constitutional amendment. Liberal state senators likely to oppose voter ID again are Sens. Chambers, Blood, Pansing-Brooks, and Morfeld, using the threadbare arguments of racism and voter suppression. They inevitably will introduce a myriad of combative amendments and motions to impede enactment. A hidden reason for liberals to oppose LR 292CA is because they understand that illegal aliens and refugees may vote illegally but vote Democrat.

. Liberals often claim that there exists only miniscule fraud. However, most fraud goes undetected because of no sufficient control, so vote fraud is much higher. The requirement to produce photo ID has not reduced voter turnout in locations where required.  Research undertaken in Indiana, a state which opponents of voter ID claim has the most draconian photo ID requirements in the nation, showed that voter turnout actually increased in the elections after the ID legislation enacted.  Notwithstanding liberal arguments, minority voter participation actually increased after new ID requirements appeared in Georgia, Mississippi, and Indiana. In 2008, the Indiana Supreme Court heard a challenge to voter ID in that state. Despite inability to produce one individual to claim such law impeded the right to vote, the state Democrat Party and others challenged its constitutionality. The court ruled in favor of voter ID, citing flagrant examples of electoral fraud throughout U.S. history, that there existed a real risk that such fraud could skew an election result. To counter the plea that many lack ID, Nebraskans of every background overwhelmingly already have photo ID. The few who do not easily can obtain one free from the state. We must use a photo ID in our daily lives, to drive a vehicle, board a plane, buy a beer, see a physician, and enter many government buildings. Such laws are not partisan or racial in nature; they apply to all people equally.

. A report from the American University bipartisan Commission on Federal Election Reform stated that our electoral system cannot inspire public confidence without safeguards to deter or detect fraud and provide valid ID for voters. It recommended photo IDs. The New York Moreland Commission on Public Corruption discovered election fraud complaints rarely investigated, shelved for years without action. A study by the U. of Missouri in 2008 found that voter participation in the first Indiana election following passage of its voter ID law actually increased, destroying the liberal argument that voter ID laws suppress voting. A like study by the Brennan Center concluded that such concerns had no effect on voting, including among minorities and the poor. The reason why such studies show no negative effect on turnout is because most already have ID documents. An American U. survey of voters in Maryland, Indiana, and Mississippi discovered that fewer than 0.5% of surveyed lacked a photo ID or citizenship documentation. An additional study2 showed that no voter ID laws have a significant effect on voter participation, do not stop interested voters from voting, and do not prevent people from registering to vote. This study examined 1.3 billion data points across 5 U.S. federal elections.

. U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens cited in Crawford v. Marion County Election Board flagrant examples of vote fraud throughout our history, which show not only that voter fraud exists but that it could affect the outcome of a close election. A federal judge refused a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of an Alabama voter ID law. He rejected arguments by liberal groups that requiring a photo ID constitutes discrimination, denies equal protection, and violates the federal Voting Rights Act. He noted that a wide range of IDs was acceptable, that voters easily could obtain a valid photo ID card. The state had argued that the law meant to join a national trend to fight voter fraud and increase voter confidence.

. A 1994 Connecticut congressional race witnessed a 4-vote margin victory. An Oklahoma candidate won a state legislative seat by only 2 votes. Nebraskan Virginia Smith won her 3rd District House race by only a few votes.

. Widely publicize the voter ID law and penalties applied for violating it, suggested at 5 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine. Added penalty for illegal aliens voting set at mandatory deportation. Post the law at all polling stations, listing acceptable forms of ID, aiding both voters and poll workers.

. Voter ID laws protect the integrity of our elections. Every eligible Nebraskan deserves the opportunity to vote, without ballots stolen or diluted by fraudulent votes. LR 292CA can deter fraud at our polls, particularly by illegal aliens and those voting under phony or deceased names. Nebraskans deserve the opportunity to vote on Voter ID as a constitutional amendment. Citizens have waited 8 long years for voter ID to pass into law. Lobby your senator today to vote for LR 292 CA, using the information above.
Email netaxpayers@gmail.com for senator contact information and to join the NE Taxpayers Legislature Watch Project.

Research, documentation, and analysis for this issue paper done by Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom. This material copyrighted by Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom, with express prior permission granted for its use by other groups in the NE Conservative Coalition Network. 1-20. C.

Previous post:

Next post: