The House Elections Committee has advanced a proposed law to require photo identification to vote.
Opponents of the measure often ask why it would be necessary, saying no instances of voter fraud at the polls has been recorded in Missouri. Its sponsor, Representative Stanley Cox (R-Sedalia), says that doesn’t mean people aren’t getting away with it.
“My position is it’s clearly an issue, because if you’re not going to cheat on election day, why do you do all of this other fraud of registration fraud, which is extremely commonly proved and exists … so when we know that people are doing that, there must be a reason. People do things for a logical reason. They do it to cast an illegal vote.”
Representative Stacey Newman (D-St. Louis County) says requiring a photo ID to vote is unconstitutional and would disenfranchise certain voting groups.
She asks Cox during the committee hearing, “If there is one person in the state of Missouri who is legally qualified to vote and could no longer vote because of this bill, is this bill justified?”
Cox maintains, “It won’t happen.”
The bill is tied to a proposed constitutional amendment which must be passed first by the legislature, then voters, in order for the bill to take effect. It must go through the House rules committee before reaching the full chamber for debate.