A U.S. court in Washington, DC has struck down a law in the southern state of Texas that would have forced potential voters to cast their ballots using only specific forms of photographic identification determined by the state
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Voter ID laws and legislation have become the topics of heated debate lately, with civil rights organizations claiming that some states are trying to enforce ID laws that would prohibit minorities from registering to vote.
The federal judges explained their decision in a 56-page report, stating that the implicit costs of obtaining the newly-required specific ID would simply be too much for many poor Americans to afford. The law would possibly have a retrogressive effect; a disproportionately large amount of Texan African-Americans and Hispanics live in poverty and would therefore not be able to pay for the casting of a ballot in the upcoming presidential elections.
People who are in favor of the ID laws claim that the laws will reduce the amount of fraud or voter impersonation. Civil rights activists claim that many minorities can’t afford the picture ID or, in the case of older minorities, potential voters may not have the required birth certificates needed for the new ID.
However, the state of Texas is planning on appealing the court’s decision.
“Today’s decision is wrong on the law and improperly prevents Texas from implementing the same type of ballot integrity safeguards that are employed by Georgia and Indiana and were upheld by the Supreme Court,” said Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott in a statement.
Governor Rick Perry also issued a blistering statement on the ruling: “Chalk up another victory for fraud. Federal judges subverted the will of the people of Texas.”