The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that Matt Lynch has pulled a discharge petition to force a vote on HB 269 which would require photo identification in order to vote in Ohio. Representatives John Adams, Andrew Brenner, John Becker (the bill’s primary sponsor), and Lynch signed the petition at a news conference announcing the effort.  50 signatures in total are required for the petition to have effect.

The article provides a list of the forms of identification currently accepted at Ohio polling places. These include:  Ohio drivers license; state ID; military ID; photo ID issued by the federal government containing name and current address; an original or copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document with the voter’s name and current address.

The Plain Dealer explains that HB 269 was based on Indiana’s voter ID law which withstood constitutional muster with the U.S. Supreme Court in 2008.  Indiana’s law requires the state to provide state issued ID’s free of charge for those people living in poverty.  HB 269 would do the same for Ohioans which the Ohio’s Legislative Service Commission estimates would cost the state $147,000 per year.

That’s money well spent to ensure accurate elections.  But even with the promise of a free state issued photo ID for those in need, opponents to HB 269 are making claims of voter suppression.

Click to view larger.  Source:  NCSL

Click to view larger. Source: NCSL

The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) has a chart on its website that outlines the voter ID laws for each state.  Voter identification procedures vary greatly between the states.  Only eight states have a strict photo ID law in place.

Call your State Representative and ask if he or she has signed the discharge petition for HB 269.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer article can be found HERE.