Mississippi officials, undeterred by the federal government’s rejection of a new voter ID law in Texas, are moving ahead with plans to put a similar law in place by the November election. “We are concentrating our efforts on implementation,” said Mississippi Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann. “We’re confident we’re going to meet the constitutional standards.” The law requires voters to show a government-issued photo ID before casting a ballot. Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson of Mississippi and a host of civil rights and voting rights groups are urging federal officials to reject the law, saying it could turn away millions of minority voters.
They’re encouraged by the Justice Department’s March 12 decision on the Texas law, which also requires a government-issued photo ID. Justice officials said the law could disenfranchise Hispanic voters, many whom lack such identification.
“It is unconscionable to think that creating a barrier, which has the potential of eliminating citizens from the voting process, is a fair and just plan for correcting the problems within this system,” Thompson wrote this month to Attorney General Eric Holder.