ACLU lawyer: Pa. agrees there is no evidence of voter fraud

Posted: August 03, 2012

HARRISBURG - A lawyer for plaintiffs said the state's new voter identification law should be blocked from taking effect because as many as one million people lack proper identification and could be prevented from voting on Election Day, while a Commonwealth attorney said the law should stand because it places no special burdens on any class of people.

Vic Walczak, legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, said not only will the law disenfranchise the petitioners that he represents, but the Commonwealth has agreed there is no evidence of in person voter fraud - the very basis on which the law was approved.

"There are registered voters who will be unable to vote under this law," said Walczak in his closing arguments on the final day of the weeklong hearing. "The Commonwealth has not assured us that every one of the petitioners can vote and that's the tip of the iceberg."

But senior deputy attorney general Patrick Cawley said the plaintiffs failed to meet the burden of proof that the law imposes "a burden on any one group of voters."

"This is a neutral, nondiscriminatory statute," said Cawley. The law, signed by Gov. Corbett in March, requires all voters to present state-approved photo identification at polling places.

Commonwealth Court Judge Robert E. Simpson said he would issue his ruling the week of Aug. 13. Both sides have said they will appeal the ruling to the state Supreme Court.


Contact Amy Worden at 717-783-2584 or aworden@phillynews.com or follow @inkyamy on Twitter.

|
|
|
|
|