Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Elections
State Board of Elections
Voter Registration [1 VAC 20 ‑ 40]
Chapter is Exempt from Article 2 of the Administrative Process Act
Action Revise Valid Definition
Stage Proposed
Comment Period Ended on 8/4/2014
Previous Comment     Next Comment     Back to List of Comments
7/14/14  1:40 pm
Commenter: James D. Nix, Vice Chair, Charlottesville Electoral Board

The proposed change to the definition of "valid" photo makes no sense

The intent of the majority in the legislature that voted for the new photo ID law clearly was to reduce the possibility of voter fraud by requiring voters to present a state or federal ID that links each voter’s name with a recognizable photograph.  The law provides a list of acceptable types of photo ID, some of which are subject to expiration and some that never expire.  Clearly then, the legislators did not feel that an expiration date was relevant to the primary goal of linking a voters name with his or her face in a photograph.  It makes absolutely no sense to say that some types of ID are valid merely because they include a recognizable photo and the voters name while others also require a date.  How can the proof of identity of the individual voter be established by the photo and the name on one form of acceptable ID but not on another one?  There are many voters who for reasons of age or disability are no longer able to drive a vehicle or travel abroad and therefore have no need to maintain a current driver’s license or passport.  However, barring a major change in physical appearance, an expired license or passport will be just as effective in establishing a voter’s identity as a student ID of comparable age that never expires.  This proposed change in the definition of “valid” for purposes of voter identification will place unnecessary obstacles in the path of some voters without contributing at all to the prevention of vote fraud.

CommentID: 32947