The Missouri House already is making some tweaks in the bill, just approved by the Senate, that mandates that voters have a government-issued photo ID.
According to Democrats, the latest House version also includes a provision that eliminates straight-ticket voting — a sore spot for Republicans, since most straight-ticket voters are Democrats.
“This proves that the voter ID bill has never been about reforming elections,'’ said Jack Cardetti, spokesman for the Missouri Democratic Party. “It’s been about winning elections for the Republican Party.'’
The added provision also violates a deal cut in the state Senate, where Republican leaders promised Democrats that they wouldn’t go after straight-ticket voting. That promise was apparently one of the reasons why Democrats dropped plans to filibuster the bill, and instead allowed for votes, in which the Senate easily approved the measure.
(The votes were 23-10 and 23-9, with only one Democrat voting in favor. See posts below for details.)
Neal English, chief of state for Senate President Pro Tem Michael Gibbons, confirmed that his boss and Majority Leader Charlie Shields, R-St. Joseph, had “given their word'’ not to target straight-ticket voting in the voter ID bill.
When asked about the House action, English replied only, “Over in the Senate, we keep our word.'"
Any House change in the ID bill will require Senate approval as well.
Friday, April 28, 2006
GOP WANTS TO KILL STRAIGHT-TICKET VOTING
Jo Mannies of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch has this in her Political Fix blog:
The Missouri GOP call this "legislation." We call it cheating.