Salter: Voter ID opponents grasping at straws

STARKVILLE – Columnist Bill Minor’s recent ramblings on the question of whether Mississippi’s voter identification laws will withstand federal judicial review in a lawsuit that hasn’t been filed indulge far more wishful thinking than actual illumination of the evolving legal environment.

Clearly the familiar “Republicans bad, Democrats good” Minor political narrative — to no one’s surprise — was the overriding theme. Minor’s apparent image of African-American citizens in Mississippi was also taken out for a rather bizarre spin while he took me to task for the sin of quoting Republican Mississippi Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann on the topic of voter ID.

Hosemann believes that the state has avoided a lawsuit on the implementation of voter ID because his office was proactive in working with the U.S. Justice Department in devising a voter ID process that respected the Constitution and was as fair and accessible as possible.

Minor wrote: “Recently columnist Sid Salter applauded Hosemann and his variety of ID instruments acceptable at the polls under Mississippi’s law, ranging from a driver’s license to a U.S. passport (can’t you see black citizens in the Delta standing in line to show their passport?).”

Won’t it be nice when black Mississippians get access to passports and international travel! Oh, wait, black Mississippians already have that access and already utilize it. I wonder how Minor thinks Mississippi’s latest Rhodes Scholar – a middle-class young man from Vicksburg who just happens to be black — is going to get to Oxford, England. Swim?

Clarion Ledger
5/10/14