Activists Make Push To Get IDs To Pa. Voters | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio
Filed Under:

Activists Make Push To Get IDs To Pa. Voters

Play associated audio

Pennsylvania's politically split Supreme Court is considering a challenge to a lower court ruling that upheld the state's polarizing voter identification law.

The law requires a state-issued photo ID card to vote, and supporters say it will help prevent voter fraud. Voting-rights activists have now shifted strategies from attempting to overturn the law, to instead putting up to a million state-issued photo ID cards in the hands of residents.

State officials recently estimated it is possible nearly 200,000 Philadelphia residents alone don't have proper ID.

Bob Previdi works with the Pennsylvania Voter ID Coalition, which has launched a tightly coordinated information and transportation campaign with the city. He says many people have expressed confusion about the voter ID law's requirements, and it is time for a concerted forward push.

"The law is the law. We've got to get people to understand what it is and make sure they have the appropriate ID," Previdi says. "We've just got to get to work, we've got to make sure our friends, our neighbors [and] our relatives all know about the law."

Pennsylvania officials have said that nobody has been prosecuted for in-person voter fraud in the state.

At a recent rally, Philadelphian Audrey Traynham worked a small crowd outside a Department of Motor Vehicles center, where residents go for state-issued IDs.

"I wasn't recruited by anyone," Traynham says. "I just feel like it's my civic duty to make sure ... everybody has their chance to vote."

Residents are required to bring a Social Security number and two items with their name and address, like a utility bill and pay stub, in order to get a state-issued ID.

Activists are also helping with transportation.

Lessie Hill, who lives in a low-income senior apartment complex in south Philadelphia, says she's helped roughly 80 neighbors because many of them no longer drive.

If the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturns the voter ID law, residents can vote the way they always have, but voting right activists say that's not a chance they're willing to take.

Copyright 2012 Temple University Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.wrti.org/.

NPR

'The Bishop's Wife' Tracks A Killer In A Mormon Community

The mystery about the disappearance of a young Mormon woman was inspired by a real-life story. Author Mette Ivie Harrison talks about her own struggles with faith and stereotypes of Mormon mothers.
NPR

Nutmeg Spice Has A Secret Story That Isn't So Nice

Nutmeg is a feel-good holiday spice. But it once caused serious bloodshed and may have even been a reason the Dutch were willing to part with Manhattan in the 1600s.
WAMU 88.5

Special Prosecutors Should Handle Civilian Shootings By Police, Holmes Norton Says

Norton says mayors and governors could stem anger over civilian shootings by police by appointing special prosecutors to handle them.
NPR

Pyongyang Blames U.S. Amid Reports Of New Internet Outages

Pyongyang has accused President Obama of "reckless words and deeds" and said the U.S. is "playing hide and seek as children with runny noses would."

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.