Before Missouri legislators can enact any sort of photo ID requirement for voters, they first must get voter approval to change the state constitution. Until the General Assembly approves a separate resolution to place the amendment before voters, any debate over specifics doesn’t matter much. In fact, Missouri House Speaker Tim Jones predicts that the proposed constitutional amendment to allow photo-ID requirements for voters will likely be the only piece of photo ID legislation to pass this year. “A wise path on this is to pass the constitutional question, for the voters to decide,’’ Jones said in a interview. “And that’s all we should likely do this year.”
If the measure is approved by voters this fall, the speaker added, the Missouri General Assembly can then focus in 2015 on what the photo-ID requirements should be.
Senate leaders, he said, have told him that getting the constitutional amendment on the ballot is “a priority for them this year…. We are more than happy to work with them to accomplish the task.”
Senate leaders also want to hold off on any implementation bill, he added. But just in case they change their minds, Jones said he does expect the House to pass an implementation bill.