Posted: 12/10/12 02:08
by Dave Mindeman
The new legislature may take up some changes to voting laws. Fortunately, they are not required to ram Photo ID down our throats because voters rejected that.
But the electronic poll book has surfaced again. Here is where elections have consequences. Mark Ritchie brought the electronic poll book idea forward as a compromise when the legislature was ramming its Photo ID amendment forward. Republicans insisted that it was not good enough. The election apparently changed that perception:
Photo ID's chief lobbyist, Dan McGrath of the Minnesota Majority, supports the electronic poll book idea as a way of ensuring that voters are who they say they are. "We want poll books -- it's pretty much universal," he said. "It's not ideal, but it's better than what we're doing now."
McGrath could have had the poll book passed in a bipartisan way and without bypassing the governor. Instead, McGrath was hellbent on a ridiculous campaign to change all of it and push a partisan agenda on restricting voter access.
Guess he has seen the light (i.e. the election) and now he "wants" poll books.
I think a lot of Minnesotans are OK with poll books, but let's keep thinking about this in methods that allow ease of access to voting and not obstacles.
Early voting is a good idea and will help people with busy schedules and time conflicts. And a better access point for getting a list of felons not allowed to vote will help election judges.
There are still ways to improve voting regulations -- but at least we can discuss this in a way not intended to ramrod one party's ideas into the Constitution.
Democrats are willing to discuss the ideas. Last year's Republicans weren't willing to discuss anything.