South Carolina House members passed the Voter ID Bill last week on a key vote. The bill requires that anyone who votes show a state photo identification card. There are approximately 178,000 South Carolinians without a proper state identification card.
“That’s a problem. So, you had to make a way to get the ID’s. So, what we did was we laid off teachers, we laid off police officers, our court system is almost shut down, and we decided to spend about $1 million on voter ID’s so you could go down and get your picture taken. But, fundamentally, the Republican party says this as a way they were going to combat voter fraud. How many instances of voter fraud have we had in South Carolina in the last five years?” says Bamberg Democrat Bakari Sellers.
Sellers says the answer is -none.
“You can say that is opens a door to voter fraud. The Department of Justice, the United States Attorney’s Office and The South Carolina Election Commission have had no instances of voter fraud. Zero!” says Sellers.
Sellers says you shouldn’t have to have an ID to vote.
“The reason that this is a new initiative is because Barack Obama’s election had a turn-out that scared the Republican Party half to death. My whole point is if you want to have an identification card, that’s fair, let’s do that. But, let’s exempt those who are 65 years or older, who may be in a nursing home, who may have problems or things like that. Let’s exempt the disabled and let’s allow college ID’s to work as well,” says Sellers.
Sellers says lawmakers should not make it difficult. He says the current process does not prove problematic and it doesn’t need to be changed. Sellers says the problem he has with the current bill is that the only form of ID accepted at the polls will be a state identification card.
“This is costing taxpayers $1 million to combat this voter fraud, but there’s no record of it. So, if you would actually stand in front of me today, just doing a hypothetical and you’re going to tell your listeners that you are going to spend their tax dollars to fix the problem, and tell them we have a problem, but you can’t really show them what it is, then I think they would think you were crazy,” says Sellers.