Elderly people without driver’s licenses could face difficulty complying with a new state voter identification law that goes into effect on Jan. 12. Under the law, a voter will be required to produce a federal or state government-issued photo ID before being allowed to vote. Although free photo IDs can obtained from any Department of Safety driver’s license testing station, those without a license must present additional documentation — proof of citizenship (such as a birth certificate) and two proofs of Tennessee residency (such as a copy of a utility bill, vehicle registration/title, or bank statement) — to receive one.
During a Blount County Election Commission town meeting Tuesday, Administrator of Elections Abby Breeding told the handful of attendees that this can prove difficult for some older voters. “It’s a lot of paperwork for some of the elderly to do.”
Drivers in Tennessee age 60 and older may opt to carry a non-photo driver license. It is much easier for those people to receive the free ID, Breeding said. “It’s not that difficult for them to get their picture added to it,” she said. “The difficult one is if they don’t have a driver’s license.”
In order to received the free ID, registered voters must sign an affidavit stating that it is for voting purposes, that they are a registered voter and that they do not have any other valid government-issued photo ID. The Department of Safety will not issue a free photo ID if the person already has a valid government-issued photo ID.
Some examples of a valid photo ID that will be accepted for voting purposes, even if expired, are a Tennessee driver’s license, U.S. passport, Department of Safety photo ID card, state or federal employee photo identification card, or a U.S. military photo ID.
“Most folks who don’t think they have a valid ID have one,” Breeding said.
Although the state will allow the use of expired driver’s licenses, which may not have the voter’s current address, Goins, speaking via an online broadcast, said voters should not abuse the system. “We are not enforcing if you can drive or not drive, but that is not a license to commit fraud,” he said.
Full Article: The Daily Times – Elderly could run afoul of ID requirements.