OKLAHOMA CITY - The ACLU of Oklahoma applauds Governor Brad Henry for striking down a Voter ID bill that could have cost many eligible Oklahomans the right to vote. Senate Bill 4 would have required Oklahoma voters to provide proof of identity in order to vote. If voters did not show proof of identity, they would be required to vote by provisional ballot. Over 80 percent of provisional ballots were rejected in the last general election. Minutes after Henry vetoed SB 4, the Republican-controlled House passed SB 692 - a similar bill that would bypass the governor and go to a vote of the people in 2010.
“We are dealing with major budget shortfalls, high unemployment, and unaffordable health care, yet the legislature wants to waste time to debate an issue that is not a problem. There is not evidence of in-person voter fraud in Oklahoma,” said Tamya Cox, ACLU of Oklahoma Legislative Counsel. “We expect the legislature to deal with real, tangible problems such as inadequate space in our jails, and our teachers being underpaid - not fantasy issues.”
The League of Women Voters, AARP, NAACP, and other civic organizations oppose all Voter ID measures.
“The right to vote is one of our most precious freedoms, guaranteed to all eligible U.S. citizens regardless of their race, gender, religion, income level or social status,” said Gov. Henry in his veto message. “And policymakers must be especially careful when tinkering with this fundamental right.”
For more information, please go to www.voterok.com.
Shortest victory for civil liberties