2012 Elections: News, Analysis, Videos, and Breaking on the Presidential Election, Local Elections, and More

2012 Elections: News, Analysis, Videos, and Breaking on the Presidential Election, Local Elections, and More

Complete coverage of the 2012 election

Hundreds Pack Rally to Protest Pa. Voter ID Law

Court challenge and federal investigation focusing on new rules for Nov. 2012 general election

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Office of State Sen. Williams
    Demonstrators at the Pa. state capitol in Harrisburg to protest the state's mandatory voter photo ID law heard from State Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams and more than two dozen others at the "Rally for Justice." A Commonwealth Court hearing on a lawsuit seeking to block the law is set for Wednesday.

    Hundreds of people are joining in a noisy rally at Pennsylvania's state Capitol to protest the state's new mandatory photo ID law for voting.

    The protesters -- union members, religious leaders and others -- gathered around a 25-foot inflatable replica of the Liberty Bell at the top of the statehouse steps Tuesday afternoon. They waved signs and chanted slogans such as “Voter ID, Not for Me!”

    More than two dozen people are slated to speak during the two-hour rally.

    'Voter Fraud Impacts Elections:' Al Schmidt

    [PHI] 'Voter Fraud Impacts Elections:' Al Schmidt
    A recent report on alleged voter fraud in Philadelphia was released just as controversy rages over Pennsylvania's new voter photo ID law. Philadelphia City Commissioner Al Schmidt (R) has raised concerns about instances of voter irregularities in city elections dating back to 2007. He says "whether it's voter fraud or a mistake, they all impact the outcome of elections equally."

    "George Washington didn't need a voter ID card,” said Pa. State Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams, who serves as Democratic whip and chair of the state government committee. “John Adams didn't need a voter ID card. Ronald Reagan didn't need a voter ID card. If it wasn't good enough for the Founding Fathers, it's not good enough for me!"

    The protest comes one day before the state Commonwealth Court plans to open a hearing on a lawsuit seeking to block the law from taking effect on Election Day, Nov. 6, 2012.

    Who May Be Turned Away From Voting?

    [PHI] Who May Be Turned Away From Voting?
    In recent weeks state and city election administrators have been compiling data on how many voters may potentially be impacted by not having the proper photo ID required to vote in the Decision 2012 Nov. general election. The Philadelphia estimate shows as many as 186,830 voters, or 18%, of those registered in the city, may currently be without the needed documents. Philadelphia City Commissioners Chair Stephanie Singer (D) is studying the figures and ways to educate voters.

    Similar protests are scheduled on Wednesday in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Allentown.

    A group of Philadelphia-area civil rights and religious leaders plans a silent march Wednesday “from Thomas Paine Plaza through City Hall ending at Governor Corbett’s office [on South Broad Street]” to protest the law, according to a press release.

    The law requires all Pennsylvania voters to present an acceptable form of photo ID before their votes can be counted. State figures show an estimated 758,000 voters, about 9.2 percent of the statewide electorate don’t have photo ID and may have trouble obtaining the required identification.

    The U.S. Justice Department asked state officials on Monday for information about whether they have tried to determine how many people lack proper IDs and what they are doing to educate voters about the requirement.