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South Carolina is among the seven states that enacted new legislation that require government-issued photo-ID to vote. The new measures have come with some degree of controversy.
Saying that such measure could keep some voters away, the Justice Department has stepped in to stop the state from implementing the new law.
These laws, which sponsors claim will help thwart any voter fraud attempt, cover voters living in nine states. Critics of the law, on the other hand, say that the measure places undue burden on minority, low-income and young voters.
According to news reports, supporters of the new laws are adamant that it is not their intent.
Rep. State Senator Larry Martin, a Republican representing District 2, said, “It wasn’t directed at minorities. It was directed at the process.” Sen. Martin sponsored the photo-ID law in South Carolina to “protect the integrity of elections.”
Sen. Martin also said, “I don’t think you wait until there is a problem before you act. I know we didn’t intend for that to be discriminatory.” His stated goal is to stop voter fraud.
Attorney General Eric Holder, however, said that the law is discriminatory because South Carolina black voters are 20% more likely to lack a driver’s license or S.C. photo ID card compared to white voters. The 73-year-old Junior Glover is one of them. He has voted for a couple of decades but does not have a birth certificate, which is one of the requirements in getting the new ID.
Glover said, “They do not want to see you vote.”