Two Forms of I.D. May Be Needed to Vote

In a heated debate today, Texas senators argued over requiring more than one proof of identification before casting a ballot at the voting booth.

As NewsChannel 10 found out today the majority of Senate Republicans are in favor of additional identification to prevent voter fraud.

However, the Democratic party claims it would prevent or suppress voting among the poor, elderly, disabled, and minority groups.

Under the current law, a citizen can cast a ballot by presenting a voter registration card or one other form of identification like a bank statement or utility bill.

But the new bill would require two.

Senator Kel Seliger of Amarillo says, "The point is we should want everyone to vote but the ballot is a particularly important ballot and the people casting the ballot should be who they claim they are."

Seliger says the law will help maintain the integrity of a citizens right to vote by preventing organized fraud.

The Potter County Clerk Julie Smith says if the law passes it should not be difficult to enforce.

"Hopefully we'll be able to inform everybody that you know if you plan to come vote this is what you'll need. Most people do I mean if they are carrying their voter registration card nine times out of ten they are carrying another form of I.D."

However, local political science professor Dr. Dave Rausch says the bigger issue is making it easier for citizens to register to vote or make changes to their voter card.

"That's probably the bigger issue. Making sure people who want to vote can vote and in part that's gonna cost the state some money and that's why I think in part that's why they aren't going to do it."

If passed the new law would not go into effect until September 1st.