Pennsylvania acknowledges there is no evidence of voter fraud
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HARRISBURG -- State attorneys defending the new voter ID law at a hearing beginning Wednesday will present no evidence that in-person electoral fraud is likely to occur this November without the law, according to a document signed earlier this month.
The state and the parties challenging the law agreed in the court document that neither side knows of cases of in-person voter fraud in Pennsylvania.
Backers of the requirement that most voters show an approved form of photo identification at the polls have said the law will prevent fraud and assure residents of the integrity of elections.
A coalition of groups including the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania is suing to stop the law from taking effect for the general election this fall. They argue it will disenfranchise legitimate voters who lack acceptable identification.
Nils Frederiksen, a spokesman for the attorney general, declined to comment on the July 12 stipulation. Jennifer Clarke, executive director of the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia, one of the parties contesting the law, said that by agreeing there is no evidence of in-person voter fraud, the parties can forgo calling witnesses to testify on that point.
The law also faces a review by the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, which on Monday sought documents related to voter registration and driver license rolls. The department informed Secretary of the Commonwealth Carol Aichele in the letter that it is examining whether the law complies with the Voting Rights Act.
First Published July 24, 2012 11:40 am