10 Reasons to be Concerned about the new Voter ID & Registration Law

Post date: Sep 12, 2017 4:10:33 PM

10 reasons to be concerned about the new voter registration law—it’s not just about showing an ID

As the President of our local League of Women Voters, I have a lot of questions and concerns about the law. It is not just a simple "Hey, show me your Driver's License." It's a little more complicated, and troubling.

1. Vague language: do you have any idea what "voter registration agency" refers to in the bill? Is that the League? Is that the County Auditor’s office?

2. Will groups like the League be able to do voter registrations at all once the new law takes effect? 821-2.10 (48A) Alternate (non-mailable) registration forms. “An Alternate registration form is authorized for the use of voter registration agencies (the rest of this statement is struck out--and nongovernmental organizations engaging in registration programs and registration drives).

3. No more free Voter Registration forms using the downloadable PDF version of the form.

4. So, is the intent to make it more difficult to register voters if you are not a candidate?

5. A statement about providing free copies of the form has been struck out, so does that mean we will now be charged for them?

6. No more straight party voting (Straight party voting is eliminated, effective immediately. All candidate choices must be individually marked on a ballot to receive votes.)

7. Voters have fewer days to use an Absentee Ballot. (Applications for absentee ballots delivered to the County Auditor’s Office must be received 10 days before general elections and 11 days before all other elections. The previous deadline was four days before the election).

8. Voters have fewer days to vote, using a Satellite location or Absentee Ballot. (The first day to vote an absentee ballot in the County Auditor’s Office or at a satellite voting location is changed from 40 days before the election to 29 days before the election).

9. The acceptable ID is more complicated.

Beginning as early as December of 2017, voters will be required to present specified identification in order to vote. If you are on record with the Iowa DOT as having a driver’s license or a nonoperator’s ID, you will need to present that card at the polls.

If you do not have a DOT-provided ID, the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office will send you a voter identification card for voting purposes. This will be a new form, and the voter ID cards provided in the past by counties will not be accepted.

Other acceptable forms of identification are a U.S. passport or a U.S. military or veterans identification card. If the voter has none of these, the voter may present multiple forms of identification to establish identity and residence.

The law is specific about these forms. For further information, contact the Black Hawk County Election Office (319-833-3007, election@co.black-hawk.ia.us) or visit our website (co.black-hawk.ia.us)

10. So are we SAFEGUARDING elections or just making it more difficult for people to vote?

Updated September 12, 2017