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

Voter ID: Frequently Asked Questions

By Karen Araiza and Catherine Brown
|  Tuesday, Oct 2, 2012  |  Updated 3:27 PM EDT
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Voter ID: Frequently Asked Questions

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A Pennsylvania Commonwealth Judge halted the state's Voter ID law on Tuesday. Here are some answers to the most common questions people are asking:

Q: Do I need ID to vote?
A: A photo ID is not required to vote in the Nov. 6, 2012 election. 
 
Q: Will I be asked to show an ID when I go to vote?
A: Yes, you may be asked to show ID, but you can still vote without it.
(If you are first time voter, or voting for the first time at a new polling place, you will be asked for identification, which can be a photo or a non-photo ID)
 
Q: Is the photo ID law dead?
A: No. The judge issued an injunction to block implementation of the photo ID requirement only for the Nov. 6 election.
 
Q: Can the injunction be appealed?
A: Yes. There could be another appeal to the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court that could affect the Nov. 6 election. There will likely be a hearing on issuing a permanent injunction on the law that could affect future elections in Pennsylvania.
 
Q: Why did the judge stop the photo ID law for November?
A: The judge was instructed by the State Supreme Court to base his ruling on whether any voters might be denied the right to vote in November. Judge Robert Simpson ruled on the issue of disenfranchising voters writing: “I expected more photo IDs to have been issued by this time. For this reason, I accept Petitioners’ argument that in the remaining five weeks before the general election, the gap between the photo IDs issued and the estimated need will not be closed.” 
 
Q: Does the ruling strike down the photo ID law?
A: No, the ruling is an injunction only for the Nov. 6 general election. It lifts the requirement to show a photo ID to vote in that specific election. Judge Robert Simpson did not find fault with asking for ID. Voters may be asked to show IDs, but can still vote if they do not have a photo ID.

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