A state senator announced Monday he will propose legislation to exempt senior citizens from the recently signed voter ID law. Sen. Tim Carpenter, D–Milwaukee, is currently looking for co-sponsors for the legislation, and expects to introduce the bill by the end of the week. The proposal would allow registered seniors who are above the age of 65 to vote without having to present any identification, according to a statement from Carpenter.
The voter ID law, signed by Gov. Scott Walker on May 25 of this year states that starting next year, all registered Wisconsin voters will be required to present a valid, state-issued identification card in order to vote in any election.
“The voter ID bill prevents election fraud by requiring that the voter prove that they actually are who they say they are. In the past if someone else next to me says, ‘yeah that’s who he is,’ [the election attendants] will believe it,” Andrew Welhouse, spokesperson for Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said.
Welhouse said the act should not have any adverse effects on voter turnout and was only proposed in order to prevent fraudulent voting.
However, Carpenter said the act makes voting harder for some individuals, especially senior citizens.
“I have had several elderly constituents endure significant difficulty and physical hardship in getting state-approved photo ID for voting,” Carpenter said in a statement. “These elderly constituents have not had driver’s licenses for years, and when they went to get a state ID at the DMV, they were refused due to a name being changed from their birth certificate or lacking ready access to birth records.”