A legislative subcommittee killed an attempt Tuesday to repeal Virginia’s requirement that voters show a photo ID at the polls. A subcommittee of the House Privileges and Elections Committee voted to shelve HB 1904, which would have eliminated the mandate that registered Virginia voters present a driver’s license, passport or other government-issued photo ID in order to vote. Republicans say the photo ID requirement prevents voter fraud. But the bill’s sponsor, Democratic Del. Steve Heretick of Portsmouth, said it prevents people from voting. “We can’t point to any incidence of voter fraud that any registrar, that anyone on the Board of Elections, that anyone can point to,” Heretick said.
However, Clara Belle Wheeler, vice chairwoman of the State Board of Elections, disputed that. “I can tell you there are people who will try to vote twice. The law is very clear: It is one vote, one person. Period,” Wheeler said. “When someone votes twice, they disenfranchise someone who votes once.”
Wheeler said states with voter photo ID laws have a higher electoral participation from “all people living in that state, no matter their race, their creed or their ethnic origin.”