Some of the Iowans who attended a public hearing on proposed voter ID changes Monday night worried the proposal would disenfranchise voters, while others worried that failing to enact the changes could open the door for fraud. “Why would anyone resist a law to prove that they are eligible to vote in that precinct unless they are not eligible to vote in that precinct?” asked Kim Hiscox, a Polk County resident who spoke in favor of the bill. Others argued the legislation would make it harder for minorities, the elderly, the disabled, non-native English speakers and transgender Iowans to vote, despite Secretary of State Paul Pate’s claim that “no eligible voter will be denied their right to vote by this legislation.”
“This bill is an unnecessary, expensive bill that threatens to disenfranchise thousands,” said Daniel Zeno, a lobbyist with the American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa. “We all want integrity in our elections. And in Iowa, we’re lucky. We have that.”
Fourteen people spoke in favor of the proposal and 20 people spoke against it during a hearing that lasted an hour and a half.
If approved, House File 516 would make numerous changes to the state’s election laws that Pate says are needed to ensure the integrity of the process and prevent fraud. Among them is a provision that would require every voter to present government-issued identification at the poll on Election Day.
Full Article: Iowans voice concerns as voter ID changes get public hearing.