Marian Berkley has managed to make it through her first 83 years without a state-issued photo ID. But after last week’s ruling in Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court upholding a new law that will require voters to present certain government-approved IDs at the polls in November, Berkley has decided she must get one. Berkley, a retired factory worker, found herself sifting through personal documents with voting rights activist Karen Buck to get in order the vital records she’ll need to acquire a state ID so she can vote. Most of Berkley’s necessary documents were in place — a birth certificate noting that she was born on a farm in Delaware, a Social Security card and utility bills in her name. She still needs to track down her marriage certificate to certify that her last name changed. Berkley could run into trouble if someone at the state ID office decides to quibble about her first name being spelled differently on her birth certificate than it is on her Social Security card, said Buck, the executive director of the SeniorLAW Center. “Really?” asked an exasperated Berkley, who has been homebound in recent years after multiple hip operations and other ailments. “How much more do I have to do to prove who I am?”
Voting rights activists railed against Judge Robert Simpson’s refusal to block implementation of the new law, which proponents say will help prevent voter fraud and opponents say will disproportionately affect elderly, young, minority and low-income voters. The plaintiffs in the lawsuit have filed for an expedited appeal with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. In the meantime, organizers are turning their attention to helping voters acquire the IDs they’ll need to vote if the law stays on the books.
Full Article: People frustrated by demands of voter ID – USATODAY.com.