(Lauer for Secretary of State campaign) – This November, Nevada voters will not be required to show government-issued photo ID when they arrive at the polls. That may be the last time they do not need to bring an ID, depending on how they vote on a common sense ballot initiative.
A proposal requiring a government issued picture ID at the polls will appear on the ballot just a few months after the regional director for ACORN will go on trial for charges of felony voter fraud in the 2008 election. The SAFE ballot initiative is sponsored by Rob Lauer, Republican candidate for Nevada Secretary of State.
Lauer is challenging incumbent Democrat Ross Miller.
In 2008, Clark County became the focus of a voter fraud scandal involving the political activist group ACORN. ACORN’s Las Vegas offices were raided by Las Vegas Metro Police after county officials discovered voter registration forms with fictional names.
The local ACORN office administrators are accused of running an illegal voter registration incentive scheme. Investigators said the employees created fake voter registration cards in order to earn the incentive pay.
ACORN’s Deputy Regional Director, Amy Busefink, will stand trial in July, charged with 13 felony counts related to voter fraud. ACORN’s local field director, Christopher Edwards, pleaded guilty last year to two counts of gross misdemeanors related to the incentive scheme and will testify against Busefink.
On February 17, Busefink appeared in court to request that she be tried in a separate case, completely removed from charges pending against the group ACORN. The judge denied her request.
Announcing his decision to introduce the ballot initiative, Rob Lauer said the following:
“Not only has the constitutionality of Voter ID been recently upheld by the United States Supreme Court, it helps to uphold the integrity of our republic and the Constitution. After watching the ACORN fraud, I feel we need this ballot initiative to be brought before the people of Nevada now.
“Nevadans have the right to decide if they value their democracy enough to ensure its authenticity. I am sponsoring an initiative for the November 2010 ballot requiring voters to show a government-issued picture ID when they vote. This common sense law will protect all of us from the felony voter fraud that was nearly pulled off by ACORN in this last election.”
In 2008, Indiana passed a similar initiative requiring voter identification. The constitutionality of the law was challenged in the United States Supreme Court in Crawford v. Marion Election Board. In a 6-3 ruling, the High Court upheld the state’s right to require a government-issued picture identification in its elections.