The bill, sponsored by Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R., Butler), is pending in the Senate, which is expected to take it up sometime after senators reconvene Sept. 19.
In the House, the bill spawned three days of acrimonious debate before the GOP majority used parliamentary maneuvers to shut it down and send the measure to the Senate in June. Even with lawmakers on summer recess, the proposal continues to provoke debate.
Last week, at a gathering of county election officials in Lancaster, Secretary of State Carol Aichele touted the legislation on behalf of the Corbett administration while the director of the Pennsylvania County Commissioners Association spelled out why his group considers it a bad idea.
Aichele cited the 2009 arrests of some voter-registration workers connected with the ACORN activist group in Pittsburgh as evidence of the need for the bill. And she said 99 percent of eligible voters already possessed an acceptable photo ID.
In a subsequent telephone interview, she said the bill would help restore confidence in the election system, which was shaken by the Florida recount in the 2000 presidential election.
"It's another layer" of security, said Aichele, a former Chester County commissioner. "It would make it harder for people to commit fraud."
Aichele said she believed voter fraud occurred in some areas and not in others.
"I've worked in polling places since 1981, and I've never seen voter fraud. I've never seen absentee-ballot fraud," she said.
But she said it was difficult to track because prosecutors tended to focus on more serious crimes and overlook voting violations, especially if they were isolated or the election results produced a landslide victory.
Douglas Hill, of the county commissioners group, said a photo-ID requirement would bog down voting as voters fumbled for their IDs and those unfamiliar with the requirement asked for an on-the-spot explanation.
"Everything that you add to the process makes the line longer," Hill said in a telephone interview.
Voters who show up at polls without a photo ID would have to go home to get it or cast provisional ballots, which are set aside and counted only if the voter goes to the courthouse within six days with proper identification.
Hill said current law provided adequate safeguards against fraud in voter registration and at the polls. The law requires voters to show identification - a photo ID or certain forms of non-photo identification - only when voting in a polling place for the first time.
People registering to vote must submit identifying information, such as a driver's license number, that county officials check against government databases. If the information passes muster, the voter-identification card is mailed to the applicant's home address in an envelope that cannot be forwarded.
"If it bounces back, we know there's a problem with the registration," Hill said.
Fourteen other states require or have approved laws that will require voters to show photo identification, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Pennsylvania lawmakers passed a similar bill in 2006, but Gov. Ed Rendell vetoed it on the ground that it would make voting unnecessarily difficult.
With strong Republican support in the House and from Gov. Corbett, the latest bill's prospects for passage - in some form - appear strong.