Photo ID bill passes Senate

by T.W. Budig
ECM Capitol reporter

Photo ID voting legislation passed the Senate today (Thursday, April 28) on a party line vote.

“I’m asking you to support a simple bill,” said Sen. Warren Limmer, R-Maple Grove, of his legislation.

Limmer argued the cost of the Photo ID bill was well worth it.

An illegitimate ballot cast disenfranchises a voter casting a legitimate ballot, Limmer argued.

Democrats attacked the legislation for failing to prevent felons from voting, for potentially costing voters money — a poll tax, Sen. Barb Goodwin, DFL-Columbia Heights, argued — and in general for being a solution in search of a problem.

The latter diagnosis has been echoed by Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton.

“This bill is about putting road blocks up to the ballot box,” said Senate Minority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook.

But Deputy Majority Leader Geoff Michel, R-Edina, said when people look back on the 2011 legislative session, they’ll probably place Photo ID as one of the top three bills.

“I think this is an important bill,” he said.

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