Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R) says Virginia’s voter identification bills, passed last week by the General Assembly, have a “50-50” chance of surviving a review by the U.S. Justice Department. The federal government has already moved to block voter ID laws in Texas and South Carolina, saying they would disproportionately harm minority voters. “Given what they’re doing with the others states, I don’t know,’’ Cuccinelli told C-SPAN. “I’d give about a 50 50 shot.’’ Republican legislatures nationwide have been adopting stricter identification standards since the 2000 presidential election, saying they are needed to combat voter fraud.
Virginia is one of 16 states that have a history of discrimination and must receive federal approval before changing voting laws. The states must prove to the federal government that the new statutes would not discriminate against minorities. Texas and South Carolina require voters to present government-issued photo identification at the polls. But Virginia’s measure, which has not been signed into law, requires some form of ID but expands the types of acceptable voter identification to include such things as utility bills and bank statements.
“The DOJ has overreached its Voting Rights Act authority in rejecting South Carolina and Texas. That will get litigated and DOJ, I expect them to lose,’’ he said.