WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - Jul 19, 2012) - Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and fights government corruption, announced today that on July 17, 2012, it filed an amicus curiae brief with the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania in support of HB 934, a voter identification measure signed into law by Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett on March 14, 2012. The ACLU of Pennsylvania filed a lawsuit against the law on behalf of various individuals, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and allied groups.
Judicial Watch jointly filed its brief with Pennsylvania attorney L. Theodore Hopp Jr. on behalf of Pennsylvania Rep. Daryl Metcalf and members of the Pennsylvania legislature who supported the bill. Rep. Metcalf was the author and driving force behind the bill. Nearly half of the members who supported the bill are signed on to the Judicial Watch amicus.
Pennsylvania House Bill 934 requires voters to produce a Pennsylvania driver's license or another government-issued photo ID, such as a U.S. passport, military ID, or county/municipal employee ID when voting. The law requires the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to provide valid identification at no cost. The law further allows an individual without identification to cast a "provisional" ballot that will be counted if the identity of the voter can be indisputably ascertained within six business days of the election.
According to Judicial Watch's amicus curiae brief:
- In passing HB 934, the legislature did no more than exercise its sound discretion and create a commonsense regulatory scheme to secure free and equal elections. The legislature undoubtedly had such authority and used it accordingly.
- In addition, because the legislature has the discretion to enact laws regulating elections, the courts must not overturn the policy choices of the legislative branch unless the legislature acts with gross abuse... In using its authority [the legislature] has not caused anyone to be disenfranchised, it has maintained and promoted free and equal elections, and it has not expanded upon the qualifications set forth in the Pennsylvania Constitution.
A trial over the legal challenge to the voter ID law is scheduled to begin on July 25, 2012.
"Voter photo identification is a commonsense safeguard that will ensure that legitimately cast votes are not canceled out by the forces of corruption," said Pennsylvania State Representative Daryl Metcalfe. "Implementation of HB 934 will restore integrity to Pennsylvania's election process, because one fraudulently cast vote is one too many."
"It is clear that leftist special interest groups are hostile to the idea of clean elections. To require a voter ID to vote is as sensible as requiring one to board an airplane, use a credit card, or open a Netflix account," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.