Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Today, the Immigration Policy Center released, Chicken Little in the Voting Booth: The Non-Existent Problem of Non-Citizen Voter Fraud. A wave of restrictive voting laws is sweeping the nation including “at least 180 restrictive bills introduced since the beginning of 2011 in 41 states” according to The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law. Bills requiring voters “to show photo identification in order to vote” were signed into law in Alabama, Kansas, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. Alabama, Kansas, and Tennessee went a step further and required voters to present proof of U.S. citizenship in order to vote. In addition, Florida, Colorado, and New Mexico embarked upon ultimately fruitless “purges” of their voter rolls for the ostensible purpose of sweeping away anyone who might be a non-U.S. citizen.
All of these actions have been undertaken in the name of preventing voter fraud, particularly illegal voting by non-citizens. Proponents of harsh voter laws often assert, without a shred of hard evidence, that immigrants are swaying election results by wheedling their way into the voting booth. However, repeated investigations over the years have found no indication that systematic vote fraud by non-citizens is anything other than the product of overactive imaginations.