Good Morning, is it time for bed yet?

Man, every once in a while I have a morning where pulling the magic covers over my head is the only thing that comes to mind as the alarm goes off. This morning is one of those. I guess an extra cup of coffee is in order.

A quick glance at blogland shows not much new happened overnight. Bloggers are still processing Indiana’s SCOTUS ruling for voter ID. I think I’ll spend some time over the next couple of days researching the issue. The party lines are very clearly drawn on this issue, and I want to figure out why. I have to show identification to do a lot of things, so it doesn’t bother me at all to consider showing an ID to vote. I guess it won’t surprise anyone that the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel feels otherwise. Today I hope to blow a hole in the MJS statement that “the elderly, the poor and minority groups, folks who tend to vote Democratic” are unable to get IDs. I’m not going to fall for generalizations here. I’d like proof that a large percentage of Americans are without identification before I consider the argument.

Let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to talk about.


  1. There are a lot of us who’d like to see proof that there is any vote fraud that ID would mitigate before we bite down on this latest attempt at a poll tax.

    It just isn’t there.

  2. My daughter, at the age of 13, had a state issued ID card. The cost was less than $10.

    My son, at 13, has one now, too.

    Why is this such an impediment? Shoot, if the financially challenged can’t afford it, let them show their Quest, BadgerCare or Medicare card, and waive the fee.

    I don’t understand why some people need to make things so difficult!

  3. Oh brother grumps! Just as a matter of policy, one should have to prove their identity for such an important matter. We show IDs everywhere, and we give out our social security numbers for everything, so why shouldn’t we have to show an ID to vote.

    Who is going to try to convince the sensible among us that older people don’t manage to get their driver’s licenses renewed? Or that they can’t get to the doctor’s offices? I’m certain that if they can’t get around and they want to vote, such as residents of nursing homes, that it would be possible to have mobile services available to make photo IDs for them, or perhaps have a waiver for those folks. If you can get to the poll, you can get to a photo ID place!

    I see people coming in to vote at the polls who can barely walk but take their duty seriously enough to get there. I know they would not object to producing an ID because they consider the right to vote almost “sacred”.

  4. If we have to show our driver’s licenses to drink ourselves to death or buy lung cancer in a pack, there is no logic in not having Voter ID required. Individuals can’t make such personal choices (smoking, drinking) without showing their ID, yet they can make a decision impacting EVERY OTHER PERSON without revealing it.

    This is not a question of why we should have voter ID. It is a question of why we shouldn’t.

    I believe it was last April when the state passed a law that undocumented immigrants could not receive a driver’s license. You should have seen the lines in the DMV last March.

    When I vote, they ask for my address, even though it is on the page in front of them and I can clearly read it across the table.

    On another note, I still don’t get how Americans or our individual communities are “impressed” or “pleasantly surprised” when we meet a voter turnout of a meager 40%. There are people in other countries who risk their LIVES to go vote, but we don’t take it nearly as seriously. Lots of blood was shed over our freedom; I personally believe it is a civil duty to vote.

    Grumps–proof that there’s vote fraud? Do you read the papers? Let me help you:

    Here’s a story where the number of ballots cast in one Milwaukee area outnumbered voters by over 4,000:

    Here’s another one about invalid addresses among many other things:


  5. I like the mobile ID service idea, but it will cost something.

    My mother is 85, lives with me, moved from another state. Her drivers license from that state has expired and is no good for ID in Wisconsin. I do everything I can to avoid taking her to DMV for a Wisconsin ID because the last time I went there was awful.

    Stood in line well over an hour with a baby in arms; it was broiling hot. Someone at the front of the line passed out, hit their head on the counter, and had to be carted away by EMTs. I don’t even remember what I was there for.

    Mom can barely walk, is subject to incontinence and exhaustion; I don’t want to go there for a new ID so she can vote. Just getting her to the dentist is tough. I think she would do it, but it would be bad for both of us.

  6. Does mom have any photo id besides the expired license from Michigan? I’m kind of curious as to what other options would be available – medicare card, etc.

  7. You can go into any Walgreens and have passport photos taken, so it would seem fairly easy for them to be able to laminate the picture into an ID that could be a form downloaded from a secure site. If it were a business, it would happen efficiently but that’s too much to expect from government!

  8. No. It’s a pain in the neck. Medicare card is just a piece of card board, like social security card. I’ve mostly been able to work around the photo id problem with her bank and an attorney we are working with anyway, but a couple of businesses aren’t happy with notarized documents and want some other sort of bank guarantee that requires a current drivers license. Very frustrating, but I’m probably going to have to make the trek to Waukesha and scope out a “slow” time of day at DMV. A birth certificate I could produce, but no photo on that either.

  9. I’m in the process of trying to get an idea and let me tell you it ain’t as easy as you’d like to believe. I’ve been to the DMV 6 times now and they are still jerking me around.

    First they wanted a bank statement that was AT LEAST 30 days old, then they wanted one that was LESS THAN 30 days old. Then they wanted my school transcripts. Then they claimed my social security card was void.

    As someone who is “fairly conservative” i would assume you would want less government spending and less government intervention. Someone else said it right when they said it was a poll tax. Voting is not a privilege, it’s a right.

  10. Fair Play says:

    It’s a “right” for those who are eligible. The best way to determine who is eligible is to have a photo ID. It makes perfect sense.

  11. And it is the right of a person who has the legal right to do so. That requires them to show that they are in fact legal and have that right! How do you stop felons and non-citizens from voting if you don’t require proof that they have the right to vote? It’s foolish to call an ID a poll tax.

  12. I find it interesting that I have to prove my identity to vote on any EBSD issue when there is a “special election,” but not to vote in a general election.

    I am also concerned that a driver’s licence is becoming the defacto photo ID. As the population ages, many more folks will no longer have driver’s licenses. My elderly father in law lost his due to multiple violations related to his declining health. But he was still mentally active and involved until his passing at age 90.

  13. Winegirl, I hadn’t thought about that!

    I’ve been sidetracked this morning, so research is delayed.

    Every once in a while real life gets in the way of blogging.

  14. First of all i’d re-franchise felons. But that’s me. I wrote speeches and legislation for student congress on it a few years ago.

    My point, Fair Play and El Gato is that I think the process should be streamlined. If I have a Wisconsin birth certificate and mail from my bank addressed to me that should be more than enough.

    Turns out, that’s only half of the shit they make you dig up and for someone like me who doesn’t have a lot of money, time, or transportation it can be (and is) an ongoing battle.

    The system needs to be streamlined. What about turning the social security card into a Photo I.D. that is issued at birth and must be updated once you hit 18 every 4 years or something like that?

  15. Al Goreleone says:

    Due to growing crime problems, fraud, millions of undocumented persons, universal healthcare, etc. the government will eventually require persons to have a “chip” embedded in them. Age, ability to pay or to understand will be no issue

  16. Any photo ID would be fine with me, but it would seem more cumbersome to have to get a photo for the social security card AND the drivers license for the majority of people who do have both. I agree that one shouldn’t have to go through the hassle of a DMV center for an ID if it’s not a driver’s license.

    Papers without a photo can be carried by anyone, so they don’t seem to be adequate. I bet more people have a driver’s license than have a certificed of their birth certificate anyhow. It would take a trip to the court house and $20 to get one, so a photo ID should be no more difficult or expensive.

  17. Shawn, it works for me. Strangely, the same people that want a voter id don’t like the idea of having a number attached to your name.

    It’s a swirly mess if you ask me, and both sides will need to compromise. And no, Al, no chip will be necessary.

  18. So we are agreed, then?

  19. Restate the the parameters and we’ll see if we fixed this one…

  20. –Streamline the system to make it easier for those who might be disenfranchised to get an ID if they have proper documents.

    –Pair Voter Registration and Voter ID drives at courthouses, DMVs, supermarkets etc.

    –Encrypt the Voter ID in order to protect our information.

    –Figure out some sort of way to make it easy for people who rightfully deserve the vote to have a voter ID. Perhaps a Driver’s License Number and/or Social Security Number would suffice.

    I don’t know the specifics are all agreeable but I think we can all agree that VID is not acceptable unless we expand access.

    That is to say it’s going to cost a lot of money either way. Are we willing to pay for it?

  21. How about just planting the microchip at birth and solve all these ID problems?

  22. El Gato, do you wish to be take seriously?

    Ok Shawn, I agree, easy access to an ID if an ID is required. If you and I were to figure it out, we’d have it made. The problem is lots of politicians will be involved with lots of hands in their pockets.

    I’d be fine with letting Walgreens administer the program under contract. There are walgreens everywhere and they already do photos! If that would work, I would think a local police department would be able to issue IDs. Lots of cities already have ID card makers for city hall.

    It is interesting that a photo ID is encouraged, but you’re having such a hard time getting one. For the youngest to get her temporary learning license she needed a birth certificate or passport and a social security card, plus my vouching for her. Here’s what’s required:

    Here’s what’s required for a passport:

  23. Quotable says:

    El Gato,
    Coincidentally, they place ID chips in cats, probably dogs, too. Injected in the back of the neck, at the time of adoption, they are about the size of a grain of rice. With all the technology they have these days… I understand they use finger-print recognition for signing in and out on the time clock at Pick-n-Save… Who knows, they just may plant chips in people in another decade or so… You are a man ahead of your time.

  24. Shades of 1984.

  25. With everything I’m posted, you shouldn’t have to ask if I’m serious! Unfortunately, I believe it will happen. They’ll wean the young into accepting it and then it will happen.

  26. A big NO to the chips–too Big Brother-ish. Plus, the chips cause unwanted immune responses and some vets believe they cause tumors and cancer. (My dog has one.)

    I am with Cindy in her puzzlement over not being able to get an ID from the state.

    I took my son in for a State ID because we did not have him go for his drivers license at 16. (We needed the state photo ID to go to Canada.) A birth certificate and soc. security card were all that were necessary.

    Interestingly, there was an illegal there at the time who presented a bad forgery of a soc. sec. card. The D.O.T. worker just politely told him that one was not good enough; he would need to come back! (Is there any wonder there is so many illegals with Wisconsin drivers licenses?)

    Great point, Winegirl, about needing to show proof to vote at a school board meeting.