I was relieved by the recent ruling by Commonwealth Court Judge Bernard McGinley, who decided that requiring all voters to show photo identification at the polls is unnecessarily burdensome to a free and fair election process (“Judge Declares Voter ID Law Is Invalid,” Jan. 18). This has become a particularly controversial issue for minority groups and those who would have difficulty securing an approved ID.
The voter ID law, which was openly identified by Pennsylvania House Majority Leader Mike Turzai as a measure to help Republicans in the 2012 election, was blatantly disruptive of the election process and disrespectful to all voters. This Republican-led measure would have disenfranchised many voters, and was in fact designed to discourage Democrats and minorities from voting.
Although the plan was touted by Gov. Tom Corbett as being necessary “to protect the integrity of our elections,” the state provided no evidence of the election fraud that this law was supposedly designed to prevent. This law was, at best, a multi-million-dollar solution to a problem that does not exist.
As a Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor, I want voters to know that I would never support a measure that would discourage any group from exercising its right to vote. If elected, I would be the first African-American woman to serve in this capacity and would use my unique perspective to protect the rights of all Pennsylvanians.