One woman who has been voting for more than eight decades in this state was told this week she may no longer be eligible to vote. She’s worked for years at the Tennessee State Capitol and has her old state ID, but that’s not good enough under the new voter ID law.
Thelma Mitchell cleaned this governor’s office for his entire term. She has been a fixture at the State Capitol for more than 30 years, yet this year she was told “you’re no longer allowed to vote.”
“I ain’t missed a governor’s election since (Frank) Clement got to be the governor,” said Mitchell. The 93-year-old Mitchell voted for the first time in 1931, soon after women gained the right to vote in the United States. “It meant a lot to me,” said Mitchell.
Mitchell worked as a maid cleaning the State Capitol, specifically the governor’s office. She has known governors, legislators and council members personally for decades.
This week Mitchell found out her old state ID with her picture on it is no longer enough to qualify her to vote.
“When he told me I may be in this country illegally, I said I’ve been over here all my life,” said Mitchell. The state’s new voter ID law means Mitchell now needs a birth certificate to get a new picture ID.