Virginia: Cuccinelli pushes for voter registration by party to help enforce closed primaries | The News Leader

In a state where party registration doesn’t exist, the idea that Virginians should have to pick a side has an important champion — the potential next governor. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II, the GOP nominee for the commonwealth’s top job, reiterated Tuesday that he thinks that Virginia should change its system to make voters officially choose a party or declare themselves independent, so that parties could ensure that only their own members vote in their primaries. Cuccinelli backed the idea when he was in the Senate, too, but come January he could be in a more important position if he defeats Democratic nominee Terry McAuliffe. “I’ve encouraged that in the past and I’ll encourage it in the future,” Cuccinelli said after speaking at the Greenspring retirement community in Springfield.

Virginia: Senate approves voter ID bill; separate House bill advances | The Washington Post

A GOP-sponsored bill to tighten voter identification rules cleared the Senate on Friday with help from Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling, who also supported a Democrat’s amendment to delay the change. But the bill, which originated in the House, now returns to the lower chamber because the Senate amended it. Also Friday, a House committee approved a separate Senate voter ID bill, which now heads to the full House. Both pieces of legislation — House Bill 1337 and Senate Bill 1256 — would remove several forms of identification, including utility bills and paychecks, that the General Assembly added last year to the list of IDs accepted at the polls. SB1256, sponsored by Sen. Mark D. Obenshain (R-Harrisonburg), would go further, requiring that voters present photo identification. Bolling, who presides over the Senate and is exploring an independent bid for governor, broke two tie votes related to HB1337, which is sponsored by Dels. Mark L. Cole (R-Spotsylvania) and Rob R. Bell III (R-Albemarle). The lieutenant governor first sided with Democrats to delay implementation until July 2014 and further specify that it not take effect until money is appropriated to educate voters about the change. But he then voted with his party to pass the underlying bill.

Virginia: Senate, House panel advance voter ID measures |

Voter identification restrictions edged one step closer to Gov. Bob McDonnell’s desk Friday as the Senate approved a measure that would shorten the list of voter IDs acceptable on the polls that went into effect last year. Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling broke a tie for Republicans in the evenly divided chamber on a House of Delegates measure that would take utility bills, bank statements, government issued checks or paychecks, student IDs and concealed carry permits off the list of identification voters can use to prove who they are. Like he did on the Senate version of the bill, Bolling also broke a tie in favor of Democrats on an amendment that would push back the effective date of the measure to July 1, 2014, and make enactment dependent on funding in next year’s budget plan for a voter education campaign. Because the measure was amended it must go back to the House for its approval before heading to the governor.

Virginia: Is voter ID contingency clause in jeopardy? |

Democrats in the Virginia Senate thought they’d won a modest victory last week when a bill to pare the list of acceptable identification voters can present at the polls was amended to delay the effect of that policy until July 2014, contingent on state funding to support it. Now, days later, some who support that amendment fear it may be in trouble. The legislation, SB 719 from Republican Sen. Dick Black of Loudoun County, is scheduled for a hearing Wednesday afternoon in a House of Delegates subcommittee whose docket also includesphoto ID legislation from Sen. Mark Obenshain, R-Harrisonburg. Like Black’s bill, the Obenshain SB 1256 wouldn’t take effect until next year, and then only if the state appropriates funds to implement its provisions.

Virginia: Republican Bolling sides with Democrats on voter ID measure | The Washington Post

Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling broke with his party again Monday by supporting a Democratic effort to delay tightening voter identification rules. Bolling broke a 20-20 tie, on a preliminary vote, to amend a bill that would remove several forms of identification the state added last year to the list of IDs accepted at the polls. The measure returns to the floor Tuesday. Bolling said in an interview afterward that he does not actually oppose the substance of the measure. He said he voted for a Democratic floor amendment that delays implementation until July 2014 simply to give voters more time to adjust to changes in the rules.

Virginia: Bolling sides with Democrats to break tie on voter-ID measure | Washington Times

Senate Democrats effectively delayed a Republican voter-identification bill for another year after Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling sided with them on Monday to break a party-line 20-20 tie. In the first tie-breaking vote of the 2013 session since he withdrew his GOP gubernatorial bid last fall pledging a new independence from his party, Mr. Bolling voted for a Democratic amendment that delayed the voter-ID changes to July 2014. The bill by Sen. Richard H. Black, Loudoun Republican, would have eliminated documents such as residential utility bills, current paycheck stubs or even Social Security cards as forms of identification accepted at polling places. Those were added to a GOP law enacted last year by Republicans in the name of preventing voter fraud. Democrats likened it to Jim Crow-era laws and called it a Republican effort to suppress black, elderly and poor voters before last year’s presidential election. Those groups turned out in huge numbers.