Our View: ‘Un-American’?
Posted: February 23, 2013
Those Democrats in the General Assembly, they can be insufferable at times. Persistent, too.
For the last few weeks, we’ve been bombarded by e-mails from party flacks, decrying Sen. Mark Obenshain’s photo-ID bill as the second coming of the “poll tax.” While hyperbole was the norm — such an electoral requirement, we were told, would disenfranchise “hundreds of thousands” — sometime the missives would descend to the painfully puerile. Such as when the party’s state chair, Del. Charniele Herring, said the proposal was “un-American.”
Well, Mr. Obenshain has taken proper umbrage, aided by the perfectly timed release of a Quinnipiac poll that shows overwhelming support for a photo ID requirement. And by “overwhelming” we mean 75 percent of the 1,112 folks surveyed. Even rank-and-file Democrats, it seems, favor such a requirement, by a 57-41 margin, as do black voters (the bill’s alleged target), by a 66-34 count. Ms. Herring, call your office.
Oddly enough, one Virginian apparently less than enthralled by the measure — which passed both houses of the General Assembly this week — is Gov. McDonnell. Granted, Mr. McDonnell ardently advanced voter ID changes enacted last year, but we believe his neutral (to the point of being squishy) stance on the bill goes deeper. Word out of Richmond earlier this week had Democrats holding the governor’s legacy road dreams hostage to 1) Medicaid expansion and 2) a desired veto of the photo ID bill.
If that’s truly the case, we hope the governor does not buckle. Mr. Obenshain’s bill would make good law, embracing as it does the adage, “It should be easy to vote and hard to cheat.”