This website is no longer actively maintained
Some material and features may be unavailable

Poll: At the polls

Should voters be required to show photo ID before being allowed to vote?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...



  • Ukie

    I voted today and my presented my Drivers License along with my Voter Registration card and the License was handed back to me with the explanation that it was not needed. Confirmation in my view that all the hype about photo ID is more racially and class oriented than Need To Know. ( pun intended )

  • vman0171

    Everyone has an Picture I’D either. Drivers license Student I’D etc. You have to show a valid I’D to show with your age to enter a bar so why not to vote. You have to have an Driver license to drive a state I’D card to get welfare. So when it comes to voting how hard is it to show who you are. I think laws shouldbe in place to confirm who you are.

  • resigned in a red state

    This discriminates against elderly people who may not be drivers and have a current license. Everyone knows that there are an incredibly miniscule number of people who fraudulently vote…Really the issue is a non-issue, out there in order to rabble rouse the easily persuaded…Politics as usual.

  • Jim

    We don’t have a voter fraud problem for which showing photo ID will solve. Many people that don’t need a photo ID for any reason except voting and should not be required to obtain one for voting only. I live in Pennsylvana where a photo ID law was passed this year.

  • RedBo

    My cousin can’t drive, but he still has a state ID – it wasn’t hard to get.

  • CAKE

    In my opinion, yes at least a photo ID should be required. Allowing non-citizens to vote in political elections compromises the sovereignty of the country.

  • Hnbc

    Before voter id should be required, there should be a documented and proven significant level of voter fraud at the polls.

    Why is there no voter id required for absentee balloting? That’s the perfect place where significant voter fraud can (and probably does) take place.

    Why are Republican legislators not willing to require voter id with absentee voting? Could it be they are trying to disenfranchise a certain element of voters? I believe that’s what they hope to do.

  • kenlv

    If any one or any group wants to conduct a fraudulant vote campaign they counld easily counterfit Picture IDs that the poll worker cannot detect in the rush at the poll. So what good does a picture do? I have always had to sign the voter book when I vote. Forging a signature is a fellony. Furthermore, who is going to stand in many voter lines to vote numerous times? Any attemple to organize such an effort would be quickly detected by alert authorities. Voter I D laws are themselves voter fraud because the intention is to discourage voting by groups that have no drivers license or pasport. So look for voter fraud by finding those behind the laws.

  • kari

    It’s not just these voter id laws pushed by mostly by conservatives, it’s removing registered voters from the roles – voters who tend to vote for dems based upon shaky reasons. It’s putting up ads in minority districts about going to jail if you don’t show id…even if you don’t have to show id. It’s the official election notices that have the election date for spanish speakers 2 days after the election..on the same form that has the correct date for english. And the Spanish language of the website contains the exact same mistake. Or weeks after a court rules that voters don’t have to show id…cause there’s no time for them to get it before the election that the Repub Sec Of State still has on the website that you have to show id, thereby scaring away potential legal voters.
    THIS IS ELECTION FRAUD…the only way that republicans can win.

  • Vogle

    I live in Louisiana, and we have had to show photo ID as long as I have been a voter, 36 years. If one has no drivers license, a photo ID is easy to obtain. No big deal.

  • kari

    A 80 yr old black woman in (I think) TN who never drove, who had voted in every election since women obtained the right to vote was denied photo id cause she couldn’t find her marriage liscence showing her name change. A vet here in CO was denied a drivers license even thou he showed 7 forms of ID. I’ve seen interviews with several WWII vets who have had difficulty obtaining proper id. A friend who decided to add III after his name (he was 3rd generation) when he went to renew his drivers license was suddenly made to go thru hoops. They didn’t even want to accept his birth certificate. A study in one southern state showed that many who needed to suddenly obtain id didn’t drive and lived over 10 miles away from the nearest DMV – making it very hard to them to get it. In FL their new laws impacted as many as 800,000 voters…most of them of demographics that vote for Democrats.

  • kari

    Finally to show that these laws impact one side more than another..Texas’ new law permits you to show your gun permit, but not your student id. Guess who tends to be conservative and who tends to be liberal?

  • qlaz11

    Just a shame to keep honest people away from the polls… it’s actually really sad to think about.

  • umpwuggly

    There are many times an ID is required, as long as the state gives people an opportunity to get a required form of ID I don’t see how there can be a problem.

  • Retired Army

    In order to obtain a concealed hand gun license in Texas you must provide a picture ID, social security number, and fingerprints to name a few requirements. This is obviously a higher burden of proof than providing just a picture ID or student ID. I would expect someone as liberal as you to demand this high standard for all voters and to defend conceal hand gun license holders instead of implying this is in some way not proof of identity. Quit using third party stories as facts and start presenting facts as your arguments.

  • kari

    As for college id -to go I needed my Social Security #, high school records and other documents to prove I could go and could pay in state rate. Why shouldn’t this be enough? As for the other posts I’ve done documenting cases where people who are citizens and have voted for decades who suddenly can’t vote or who have difficulty voting these come from multiple sources with direct interviews with those people denied their right to vote and from varied independent studies done on the impacts of different states laws. and (if you read carefully) personal stories.

  • kari

    A lot of these laws have been sponsored by ALEC, an organization founded by a guy who was recorded several years speaking in front of a conservative church group stating that “too many people have what I consider GooGaa syndrome. They believe in Good government. They believe that EVERYONE should vote. Frankly, our influence goes down as the voting population goes up.” One of the other founders of Alec was the son of they guy who founded the Right wing extremist / racist John Birch society.

  • kari

    Finally, considering that every search for folks committing voter fraud has turned up the equivalent of it occurring 0.0002% and in state after state voter id laws negatively impacts between 15% -18% of legal voters, don’t you think requiring these id’s goes against the very foundation of democracy? What are we if we don’t have the right to vote? Why are our soldiers dying overseas if not for our rights – at least that’s what we’re being told. Those who didn’t have the right to vote until the 20th century were basically non-citizens. Until we could vote and could influence elections Women couldn’t open banking accounts or own property. It all belonged to husbands or fathers. If the husband died than his nearest male relative could take everything. heck to this day republican’s don’t believe that Govt should force employers to pay a woman the same wage as a man for doing the same work.

  • Anonymous

    Voters should be pleased to produce photo ID prior to casting their ballots!
    Only US citizens may vote. Applicants for citizenship “must be able to read, write and speak ordinary English unless they are physically unable to do so due to a disability such as being blind or deaf, or suffer from a developmental disability or mental impairment. Individuals over 50 years of age on the date of filing who have lived in the U.S. for a total of at least 20 years after admission as a permanent resident and those individuals who are over 55 years of age and have been legal permanent residents for at least 15 years are also exempt from this requirement.”
    Taxpayers foot the bill for ballots, voting literature, elections websites, and translator services in foreign languages (see Clinton Executive Order 13166). This is utter madness, and a colossal waste of taxpayer funds! English should be the official language of the United States government (Constitutional Amendment) – and of commerce and industry. Birthright citizenship for “anchor babies” and babies of visiting tourists/business travelers must also be set aside by the Supreme Court of the US.

  • lgfromillinois

    In Illinois on election day, you sign in. Your signature is compared to a registration card signed when you provided residence and citizenship to become a registered voter. Comparing of signatures is used to clear a check by your bank. Why are additional steps to excercising your right to vote?

  • Patriot38

    We have to show a picture ID for everything but the most important function in the country and it makes little sense not to require a picture ID to vote. I even have to show a picture ID to check in to see my doctor. What’s the fuss? When you have dead people and illegals all voting, they are voting for the Democrats in order to get more government freebies. No, I’m not a Republican!

  • discouraged

    absolutely not! another way to disenfranchise people Why not examine (after the election) why we have an electoral college, why elections aren’t decided by popular vote, and how we can change this ancient, ill-conceived process.

  • @KaylaWildflower

    It’s sad that even people watching a PBS program are not educated enough to know the massive disenfranchisement caused by Voter ID laws.

  • Proud Citizen

    My 74 yr old mother has never drove but it makes her feel proud to have an I.D and be a Legal American in order to vote. All these people complaining have had 4 years to get an I.D..are Kidding me?

  • Origamimoon

    Another attempt by the right wing Republicans to disenfranchise those who are of a diverse ethnicity, eldery and low income. If they want to steal elections it should not be with the support of America. We need to revamp these racist, ageist and income based discrimination policies and make it illegal to commit this crime against Americans. BTW god does not allow conception during rape to happen and corporations are not people!

  • Proud Citizen

    Well said, and whats really sad is that the democrats always make sure that the military vote doesn’t count. How come PBS won’t do a show on that?

  • Proud Citizen
  • Retred Army

    Our soldiers are very unique in the fact that they not only are willing to fight and die for our rights but to fight for those same rights for others like the right for girls to attend school in both Afghanistan and Iraq. We haven’t fought for over ten years in Afghanistan to protect your rights it’s been to stop terroism and to prevent future attacks by terrorist. You’re very naive to think we fight wars in foreign countries to protect your rights, that’s a battle here on the home front. Our government is the one that is taking away our rights by allowing non-citizens the same rights afforded citizens; stoping illegal aliens from participating in our election process is the duty of all citizens not the military.

  • Bring democracy to America

    They are projecting a false claim that the vote could be affected by a form of fraud that they have not been able to find ten solid examples of, and using that false claim to defraud millions of voters of their right to vote.

    1. It is numerically absurd to try to prevent approximately ten potentially phony votes (which couldn’t possibly affect the outcome of an election) by preventing millions of legitimate votes (which could easily affect the outcome of an election).

    2. The fact that the prescribed ‘remedy’ targets democratic voters exposes the fact that this is antidemocratic voter suppression, and nothing more.

    Republicans are pretending to protect the outcome of the vote from being imperceptibly altered, by ENSURING that the outcome of the vote will be VASTLY altered (in Republicans’ favour).

    More simply put: Republicans are lying and cheating.

  • Bring democracy to America

    Because that’s a lie.

  • Jon Marcus

    Yes, ID should be required however getting that ID should be free (for low income people) and simple (for everyone). Apparently it is not.

  • William J Chase

    I think anyone that wants to Vote shoud have to show a picther and be Fingerprint

  • EuchDad

    IDs are easy to obtain. IDs are required for other less important functions. Why it’s not required for the important task of voting is wrong. It would be a tool to reduce voter fraud.

  • EuchDad

    No one is suggesting we keep honest people away from the polls. Any honest person can easily obtain an ID and fulfill their right and privilege to vote.

  • chickhiller

    What if my grandma doesn’t have her license, state ID, or a passport. There are a lot of poor people who deserve to vote.

  • pensween

    Everyone does not have an ID. An 80+ year old WWII veteran was turned away from the polls because he did not have a photo ID. He doesn’t drive, he has a Social Security Card and a Medicare card, but no photo ID. Here in Texas there are many older people who do not have photo IDs and would have to drive many miles, sometimes hundreds of miles (West Texas) to get a photo ID.Many people don’t have cars, reply on public transport and work 2 minimum wage jobs to make ends meet and take care of their families. If they miss a day’s work to go to the TDMV, they get fired. Not everyone lives the life you live. You are blessed.

  • Jerrie DeRose

    This is true also. Many states did not pass voter ID laws until this spring or summer. This has left little time for those having to travel excessively long distances and who make less than $40,000 per year to get that ID. I hope before the next election, those states with voter ID laws work to help people get to locations where they can get a picture ID and allow those who can prove they are on a fixed or limited income to get theirs free. I also hope communities rally and find volunteers, hold fund raisers, and seek help from non-profit civic and other organizations to help low income citizens, minorities, and those on fixed incomes get to DMV locations.

  • Jerrie DeRose

    How far did he have to go to get it? When I was reviewing EHS and HS programs nationally for 10 years, I was in a Minnesota community where most doctors, etc. and the DMV office was over 4 hours away, and in one Ohio country that is so rural there was only 4 towns in the entire, very large county. Even in Kansas, where DMV office are centralized at the county seat, some people have to travel as many as 8 hours to get to the DMV office to get a state picture ID or a driver’s license. And a large number of those people, including many senior citizen’s who have voted for as many as 60 years or more without needing a picture ID and who have neither the money for an ID or a way to get there to get one.

  • Gary L Davis

    Even the IRS requires your social security number to file for a refund. Voting being such a major citizen requirement requires the same scrutiny to prevent unauhorized voting and voting twice or even more by people trying to screw the rights of others.

  • Rufus

    If you want to see voter fraud just look at the washington govenor election of 4 years ago. 32 votes that decided the election were names of motor cycles in King county with addresses of county buildings like the library or the court house.

  • povtr

    Get her one it is easy.




    There should be a separate department to give out voter ID’S since it is easy to get a drivers license or photo ID. There should be double checking with several proofs of being a citizen

  • Lee Lundy

    Because PBS is like NBC, CBS, CNN,ABC, and most of the liberal media, they want to censor ANYONE that disagrees with their liberal agenda. Just look how their cronies are trying to stop conservative talk radio and anyone else that tries to tell people the truth. It’s just plain censorship.

  • NanaRe

    I would vote ‘yes’ but I’d much rather they come up with ‘thumb print’ method as some places in Europe have (or so I’ve heard). It would quicker & easier than have a ‘picture’ ID.