Longtime Republican politician Stanley R. Lawson Sr. says he knows a rat when he smells one. And what’s going on politically around recently passed voter ID laws in his home state of Pennsylvania reeks of partisan politics. Lawson, 70, a registered Republican, is currently the head of the Harrisburg chapter of the NAACP, but has served as chair to the Dauphin County Republican Party and as a member of the Harrisburg City Council. “The whole thing stinks,” Lawson told The Huffington Post on Friday afternoon. “They say the reason they did this is because of all the fraud going on. But I happen to be a former Republican chairman of the county, I’ve been on the city council, I’ve been a township commissioner, and I’ve never seen it or heard anyone complain about voter fraud.”
In Pennsylvania, state courts are still hashing out legislation passed this Spring that requires voters to present state-issued photo identification to cast a ballot,identification that nearly 10 percent of Pennsylvanians reportedly don’t have, according to recent studies. Pennsylvania joined a host of other states, nearly all of which are controlled by Republican-led legislatures, in passing some kind of controversial voter ID law. A few states, including South Carolina and Texas, have already had their laws challenged by the Justice Department under the Civil Rights Act because of a history of discriminatory election practices.