In August, a Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court judge upheld the state’s new voter ID law—despite the fact that state officials presented no evidence of in-person voter fraud, and didn’t even try to claim that voter fraud would likely occur this November in the absence of an ID requirement. Contrary to expectations, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court yesterday vacated that lower court ruling. The Supreme Court did not strike down the law, but it returned the case to the Commonwealth Court for review because “the Law is not being implemented according to its own terms.” Briefly, while the law requires “liberal access” to non-driver photo IDs, it’s still difficult to obtain one. “Generally, the process requires the applicant to present a birth certificate with a raised seal…a social security card, and two forms of documentation showing current residency.”
By October 2—mere weeks before the election—the original trial judge must give both sides a chance to make new arguments and deliver a new opinion. If he finds that voters can indeed obtain IDs, and won’t be disenfranchised, he can let the law stand. There’s just one line in the order that strikes me as incorrect: “Given this state of affairs, we are not satisfied with a mere predictive judgment based primarily on the assurances of government officials, even though we have no doubt they are proceeding in good faith.”
Full Article: Penn Supreme Court Vacates Lower Court Voter ID Ruling – NYTimes.com.