STATE ELECTION BOARD ON RECORD SUPPORTING VOTER ID
For the first time, Mississippi’s official state Election Board has gone on record supporting a requirement that Mississippi voters show some form of identification at the polls.
The historic action supporting voter ID was taken at a meeting of the Elections Board today that was attended by all three of its members – Governor Haley Barbour, Secretary of State Eric Clark, and Attorney General Jim Hood. On Governor Barbour’s motion, and with the support of Secretary of State Clark, the board voted to file a motion in a federal lawsuit calling for voter ID in state elections.
Attorney General Jim Hood abstained from voting on Governor Barbour’s motion, saying he was representing the Mississippi Legislature in the lawsuit, although the Legislature is not a defendant in the lawsuit. The lawsuit was filed by Mississippi Democrats to close their party primaries, and a federal judge ruled last week that the state should, among other things, require voter identification.
“Today, Secretary of State Clark – who is the state’s chief elections officer – and I agreed in the spirit of good government and bipartisanship to support voter identification,” Governor Barbour said. “Voter identification is necessary to protect the integrity of our citizens’ most fundamental right, the right to vote, and promotes confidence in the integrity of our participatory democracy.”
As far as implementing voter ID, the resolution adopted by the Election Board said the federal court order can be carried out before next year’s primary elections.
Governor Haley Barbour Press Release