Brazile: Missouri Voter ID Ruling Renews Importance of EAC Report Being Made Public
Washington, DC - This week, the Missouri Supreme Court dealt yet another blow to the Republican Party's efforts across the country to win elections by making it harder for Americans to vote. In a decisive 6-1 vote, the Missouri state court declared that the Republican-engineered voter ID law would have imposed a "heavy and substantial burden on Missourians' free exercise of the right of suffrage."
The court ruled that the law violated constitutional provisions , including the equal protection clause of the state constitution. A similar voter suppression effort in Georgia was also found unconstitutional earlier this year. As a result, Georgia state officials are scrambling to inform voters who may have been dissuaded by ID legislation that it will not be in effect for the 2006 elections.
DNC Voting Rights Institute Chair Donna Brazile issued the following statement: In light of the Missouri and Georgia rulings, the rebuke by the 9th circuit court of Arizona, and the nation-wide wave of Republican so-called "ballot security" measures, it's time the U.S. Elections Assistance Commission (EAC) release the preliminary report commissioned earlier this year which found widespread agreement that there is little polling place fraud.
"The Missouri Supreme Court ruling is further vindication of the reality that Voter ID restrictions endanger the fundamental right of countless Americans to vote. Americans deserve to know that false claims of voter fraud are unsubstantiated and have every right to see the EACs full report. The EAC must stop withholding its valuable report and release it to the public so that we can move the discussion from harmful voter ID laws to real election reform. Real reform must work not only to protect our most fundamental right to vote but should also encourage active civic participation in our Democracy by all eligible voters regardless of race, class, gender or economic status. Both parties must work together to ensure that no eligible voter is turned away at the polls."