Monday, April 28, 2008 the United States Supreme Court ruled 6-3 to uphold Indiana’s Voter ID law. Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita, Indiana’s Chief Election Officer and the Respondent in the case vigorously defended Indiana’s law.
“Today, Indiana won the national battle for voter protection and state’s rights. Across the country, leaders are thanking Hoosiers for raising the bar in protecting voters and improving the integrity of the election process,” stated Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita. “I expect many states to follow our lead.”
Many states across the nation have waited for the Court’s opinion on the two consolidated cases, Indiana Democratic Party v. Todd Rokita and Crawford v. Marion County Election Board. States like Mississippi and Texas have attempted to model their Voter ID proposals after Indiana’s law in an attempt to improve election accuracy.
“Indiana’s ID law is about accuracy – are we going to demand accuracy through integrity in our election process? The answer from the Supreme Court echoes that of the American people. Yes, we want accurate elections that protect each individual’s vote,” stated Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita.
The photo ID law has been tested and successfully passed the scrutiny of the courts in the past. First, by U.S. District Court Judge Sarah Evans Barker in 2006 and then upheld by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals which ruled 2-1 in favor of upholding Indiana’s Photo ID law in 2007.
Over the last three years, the Indiana Secretary of State’s Office has maintained an aggressive plan to inform Hoosiers of the Voter ID requirement as part of a $1.25 million in voter outreach and education. This year, Secretary Rokita increased primary outreach spending, focusing on the photo ID requirement and tailoring the outreach to new voters.”
“As we have with the past seven elections in our state, we will continue to work with local election officials to inform citizens of the ID requirement,” stated Secretary Rokita. “Our office has increased our outreach efforts by almost 50% during this busy primary season. It is my hope that those who spent energy in fierce opposition will spend equal amounts of energy helping us continue to inform Hoosiers of this common-sense requirement.”
Public Law 109-2005 requires Indiana residents to present photo ID before casting a ballot at the polls on Election Day. The photo ID must meet 4 criteria to be acceptable for voting purposes. It must:
1. Display the voter’s photo
2. Display the voter’s name, and the name must conform with the voter registration record
3. Display an expiration date and either be current or have expired sometime after the date of the last General Election
4. Be issued by the State of Indiana or the U.S. government
In most cases, an Indiana driver’s license, Indiana photo ID card, US Passport, or Military ID is sufficient. A student ID from an Indiana state school may only be used if it meets all of the 4 criteria specified above.
The law requires that the Bureau of Motor Vehicles provide free photo identification to citizens who do not already have a valid photo ID that would meet the requirements.