A hotly debated bill that would require voters to show a government-issued photo ID before they could cast a ballot will undergo changes to lengthen the list of acceptable IDs, a key Pennsylvania state senator said Friday. That list in an amendment being written could include work IDs, college student IDs and, for elderly voters, expired driver’s licenses, said Senate State Government Committee Chairman Charles McIlhinney, R-Bucks.
The bill that passed the Republican-controlled House in June over the loud objections of Democrats was too stringent, McIlhinney said. Still, a requirement that some form of photo identification be required is still appropriate to guard against voter fraud, he said. “We’re looking to ensure that there is a voter ID requirement, that people need to produce some type of identification to ensure the one person, one vote rule is not violated,” he said.
McIlhinney said he expects Gov. Tom Corbett, a Republican, will sign any stronger voter ID requirement that passes the Legislature, and he has discussed the changes with the bill’s sponsor, House State Government Committee Chairman Daryl Metcalfe, R-Butler, in search of a compromise.
But Metcalfe said Friday that work IDs or college IDs do not meet his threshold for what he views as the strongest possible photo identification requirements.
“There’s some problems when you go to some forms of identification that are not secure,” Metcalfe said.
Sending a bill to Corbett’s desk this year would ensure the changes are in place for next year’s primaries and general election.