P.A. JUDGE: Voters no longer need ID

Students at Eastern University have received notifications about the new law set in place to have an appropriate form of identification in order to vote. Bettie Ann Brigham has sent students an email about how Eastern offered stickers to allow student IDs to be used for the proper identification to vote, as well as offering a way to register for this upcoming election.

However, on Tuesday, October 2nd, Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson ruled that state officials cannot require voter identification at the November election. The election officials are allowed to ask for photo identification, but are not allowed to deny someone their vote if they do not have it.

Like Eastern, many other colleges in Pennsylvania, before the law was blocked, were altering students’ college IDs to be sufficient for voter identification.

As stated Judge Simpson’s memorandum opinion filed October 2nd, “For several reasons, I decline Petitioners’ post-hearing invitation to enjoin Act 18’s requirement that election officials request that an in-person voter show photo ID.” One of his reasons is that there is not enough time to implement the changes and to allow voters to gain acceptable photo identification. He writes, “I expected more photo IDs to have been issued by this time.”

As quoted by CNN, Republic Governor Tom Corbett said the law “sets a simple and clear standard to protect the integrity of our elections.” The law is to help protect fraud from in-person voting. As Pennsylvania is also a battleground state, it is important to protect the votes from fraud. According to CNN, this state is one of 31 states with some requirement for voter photo identification.

Judge Simpson will have another hearing to determine if the law will stand permanently after the November election.

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