By Yaël Ossowski | Florida Watchdog
TAMPA — As county election officials thumbed through the 2 million ballotscast during the Aug. 14 party primary election in Florida, a state judge nearly 1,000 miles away was preparing his ruling on a law closely mirroring the voter identification requirements in the Sunshine State.
The next day, Aug. 15, Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson rendered his judgment and upheld the state’s new voter ID law, passed by the Republican-led Legislature and challenged on the grounds that it places an undue burden on minorities, students and the elderly — a similar argument used tocriticize voter ID provisions in Florida.
The ACLU of Pennsylvania, which pursued the case,lamented the decision of the court because they claim they clearly demonstrated that “impersonation fraud is not a problem,” according to the PA Independent, a sister news website ofFlorida Watchdog.
Florida’s voter ID law requires that voters present an official identification with their photo, such as a drivers’ license, a state ID card, a passport, a debit or credit card, a military ID card, a student ID card and a public assistance ID card.
Requiring photo identification for voting has now become commonplace in the state of Florida, thanks in part to a history of electoral problems in the 2000 presidential election, which gave the election to then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush with only 537 votes.
“As I recall, it’s never been a major issue or hardship for our voters,” said Sharon Harrington, election supervisor of Lee County.
In the event that any voter finds themselves at the ballot box without a proper form of identification, Harrington told Florida Watchdog that Floridians can cast a ballot and assure it will be counted.
Read more: Florida Watchdog