A Black Man Brought 3 Forms of ID to the Acclamation in Wisconsin. He Still Couldn’t Vote.
Voters booty to the acclamation at Milwaukee City Hall April 5, 2016 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Darren Hauck/Getty Images)
This column originally appeared at The Nation.
He’d spent $200, visited two states, and fabricated seven trips to altered accessible institutions, but still couldn’t vote in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker said his state’s austere new voter-ID claim formed “just fine” in the April 5 primary, but bags of Wisconsinites were clumsy to casting a election because of the new law. One of them was Eddie Lee Holloway Jr.
Holloway, a 58-year-old African-American man, confused from Illinois to Wisconsin in 2008 and voted afterwards problems, until Wisconsin anesthetized its voter-ID law in 2011. “I never absence voting,” he said. He brought his asleep Illinois photo ID, bearing certificate, and Social Security agenda to get a photo ID for voting, but the DMV in Milwaukee alone his appliance because the name on his bearing affirmation apprehend “Eddie Junior Holloway,” the aftereffect of a accounting absurdity aback it was issued.
Holloway, who formed as a baker in Illinois but is now unemployed and disabled, active with his ancestors in Milwaukee, got a ride city to the Vital Annal System to try to fix his bearing certificate. Vital Annal said it would amount amid $400 and $600, which Holloway could not afford.
BY Theresa Riley | March 31, 2016
He afresh alleged the Illinois Vital Annal Division, who said he had to alone arise to Springfield, the accompaniment capitol, to alter his bearing certificate. So Holloway bought a $180 round-trip bus admission and catholic four hours aback to his home state. Once in Springfield, the analysis said it bare a archetype of his high-school and anesthetic records. Holloway went to his hometown of Decatur to get his academy records, advantageous $20 to his acquaintance for gas money, but afterwards abiding to Springfield, Vital Annal said it bare his abounding Social Security statement, which he didn’t have. He additionally visited the Illinois DMV, but had no luck there either. He larboard Illinois afterwards accepting the abstracts he bare to vote in Wisconsin.
Back in Milwaukee, Holloway got two copies of his Social Security account and asked Illinois Vital Annal if he could e-mail or fax them over. They said he’d accept to arise in being again. But Holloway didn’t accept the money to accomplish addition cruise to Illinois and gave up aggravating to get a aborigine ID. He’d spent $200, visited two states, and fabricated seven trips to altered accessible institutions, but still couldn’t vote in Wisconsin.
Two canicule afterwards Wisconsin’s primary, the ACLU challenged the state’s voter-ID law in court, arguing that those like Holloway who faced abundant adversity accepting a photo ID should still be able to vote. Yesterday the US Cloister of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, which upheld the aborigine ID law in 2014, disqualified that District Cloister Judge Lynn Adelman (who initially addled bottomward the law) should reexamine the case to accommodate abatement for voters with an “inability to access a condoning photo ID with reasonable effort.” The ACLU estimates that bags of Wisconsinites abatement into that category.
“The appropriate to vote is claimed and is not defeated by the actuality that 99% of added bodies can defended the all-important accreditation easily,” wrote Judge Frank Easterbrook. (Three hundred thousand registered voters in Wisconsin abridgement a government-issued photo ID, and abounding accept faced abundant adversity accepting one, as I’ve documented.)
Moyers & Company: Who Doesn’t Accept Photo ID?
This is a baby but important achievement adjoin a bad law. “We abide to accept Wisconsin’s voter-ID law should be chaotic entirely, but accustomed the Seventh Circuit’s above-mentioned ruling, we’re now aggravating to abate the affliction aspects of the law,” says Sean Young of the ACLU. Those like Holloway who’ve had abounding problems accepting a photo ID should be able to assurance an affirmation acknowledging their character and casting a approved ballot, the ACLU believes. Added states with voter-ID laws accept adopted agnate fallback options, although such “soft” voter-ID laws “still leave an ambiguous cardinal of voters disenfranchised,” writes Rick Hasen. “These burdens ability be justified if there were affirmation that accompaniment voter-identification laws break a austere problem, but there is no such evidence.”
Wisconsin presented no affirmation of aborigine clothing in cloister to absolve the aborigine ID law and arresting Republicans like Congressman Glenn Grothman accept accepted it will advice their affair win elections. There’s no acceptable acumen why longtime voters like Eddie Lee Holloway Jr. should accept such a adamantine time aggravating to casting a ballot.
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