Voter ID controversy

Voter ID controversy

Thirty states require voters to present identification before they fill out a ballot but in California, most voters will only need to give their name and address. If you're voting, you'll likely won't need to show any identification, election officials will simply take your word for it.
As the nation heads to the polls Tuesday, controversy is brewing about who gets to cast a vote. Thirty states require voters to present identification before they fill out a ballot but in California, most voters will only need to give their name and address. If you're voting, you'll likely won't need to show any identification, election officials will simply take your word for it.

Hoping to beat the Election Day rush, early voters lined up Monday eager to cast their vote.

"Extremely easy, the lines were short. Took me less than ten minutes," said early voter Victor King.

For some, simply getting a ballot was easier than they thought.

"I did not have to show my ID and I just figured since we had to sign the forms stating who we are, that was good enough," said early voter Sandi Coleman.

"Just walked in and dropped it in the box," said Tyler Reed who dropped off his ballot Monday.

Behind the scenes, election workers sorted through more than 95,000 early ballots. According to California State Law, many of those voters didn't have to show any ID.

"If you registered to vote online or by mail and this is your first time voting in a federal election you will be required to show identification. That's the only instance in which voter identification is required," said Karen Rhea, Division Chief of the County Clerk Elections.

But some wonder if it's too easy to vote. Political Science professors at CSUB say it's a controversial issue among Democrats and Republicans.

"In part because of a number of close elections including the presidential elections that are very close either overall or some particular state," said Dr. Stanley Clark.

Democrats claim voter ID laws discriminate against minorities and the poor while Republicans say not showing ID leads to voter fraud.

"No one knows the true number because some of it probably goes undiscovered. That which has been uncovered is a relatively small number,” Dr. Clark said.

But regardless, it'll likely lead to more controversy no matter who wins the election. Voter fraud is considered felony purgery and carries a one to five years in jail and a $10,000 fine.
 
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