Jay Ambrose’s column on “voter fraud” was incredibly ridiculous and partisan, particularly his claim that requiring photo IDs to vote is “no big deal.”
I just returned to South Carolina after being away for seven years. It took me five weeks to finally get a new driver’s license. First, there were issues about insurance on the car I had when I left the state. Once that was cleared up, I had to prove that I was the same person as the one named on my birth certificate, because my birth certificate did not have my hyphenated last name. It cost me $12.50 for the actual license and $31.50 for the copy of my marriage certificate from the state of Washington and four trips to the local Department of Motor Vehicles office (during, of course, the state’s normal working hours).
Now imagine if I had been a poor person, someone who needs to work full time just to make ends meet. I would have to take unpaid time off for my four visits to the DMV. Imagine if I did not have easy access to the internet in order to communicate reasonably with my insurance agent, to find all of the forms needed to apply for a license and to order my marriage certificate copy from Washington state. Imagine if I did not own a car and did not live near a DMV office.
Mr. Ambrose should try to tell a person like that that getting a photo ID is “no big deal.”
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James H. Knowles-Tuell