In many of the articles I’ve read regarding the Voter ID legislation that was signed into law by Gov. Scott Walker yesterday I’ve seen a variation of the following statement from officials who support the legislation. This version of the statement comes from Oneida County Clerk Mary Bartlet:
“”You have to show an ID to buy liquor, you have to show an ID to use a credit card so why not?” “
This simply isn’t true. You do not “have to show an ID to use a credit card.” There is no law in the State of Wisconsin that makes that a requirement. There is no federal law that makes that a requirement.
In fact, in many cases it’s a violation of the merchant’s contract with the card issuing company, “Merchants may ask a customer for identification, but in most situations, a merchant may not condition acceptance of a Visa or MasterCard credit card upon the customer presenting identification. ”
From what I understand, the logic of not requiring photo ID is that credit card companies want to make it easier to use their cards. For example, when was the last time a gas pump asked you to show your identification? Additionally, the federal government has strong consumer protection laws making credit card users only liable for up to $50.