Press Release

Missouri Voter ID: A Solution in Search of a Problem

BURLINGTON, VT, our nation's largest progressive political action organization, is standing firm in its opposition to Missouri's House Joint Resolution 48; a resolution that would require voters to prove citizenship before exercising their constitutionally guaranteed right to vote. This morning, DFA sent a message to its Missouri members calling on them to contact their state Senators and demand that they vote No on HJR 48.

"HJR 48 is as bad as it is unnecessary," said Jim Dean, Chair of DFA. "HJR 48 is a big government power grab that will disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of American citizens."

Republicans forced the resolution through the Missouri House of Representatives over the weekend and it will likely be voted on by the Senate this afternoon. The resolution will force American citizens who vote in Missouri to prove their citizenship by presenting an approved form of government-issued photo identification.

"It's a sad day when the General Assembly spends the people's time crafting legislation that is intended to disenfranchise elderly and poor citizens," said State Senator Joan Bray (St. Louis), an opponent of HJR 48. "My Republican colleagues try to talk a good game about protecting elections, but in the end this is just another example of big government run amok."

Democracy for America recognizes that voter ID laws are just the latest attempt to disenfranchise voters and place additional hurdles before citizens who want to participate in our political process. HJR 48 follows in a long line of measures designed to prevent people from voting. Like poll taxes and literacy tests, voter ID laws are intended not to protect the integrity of elections, but to disenfranchise traditionally Democratic voters. As a stunning example of how voter ID laws disenfranchise and punish voters, just last week in Indiana, as many as 12 nuns were turned away from their polling place because they did not have photo identifications.

"Republicans know the American people have rejected their failed philosophies, so, all they have left is to stop as many people as possible from voting," said Arshad Hasan, Executive Director of Democracy for America. "HJR 48 is a despicable and desperate attempt by Republicans to win an election through Draconian means when they can't win on their own merits."

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