A “voter suppression” panel at the Campus Progress National Conference featured a group of panelists who made the argument that a recent string of voter ID laws in certain states are purposefully kicking minorities and students off the voter rolls. But it was Lee Rowland from the Brennan Center for Justice who made the most egregious statements regarding how voter ID laws were meant to “screw over students.”
Rowland said there were also five states that gained a “scarlet letter” when it comes to voter suppression and there are three states that have “explicitly” designed their laws to exclude students. According to her, the worst offenders include Texas, South Carolina and Wisconsin.
Rowland believes photo ID laws are generally bad because 1 in 10 Americans do not have any kind of government-issued ID.
The “non-partisan” Brennan Center for Justice is leading the Left’s charge against photo ID voter laws.
“There have been a number of laws passed in the last few years in state legislatures that do, and are intended to make it more difficult to register and to vote,” said Rowland. “They are making it harder to actually register and to actually vote, for all kinds of voters.”
Rowland went so far as to suggest that current laws are designed to purposely keep students from voting, with these laws having certain restrictions on residency for the days leading up to the election.
Rowland also claimed that the new laws would also disproportionately affect the elderly and minority voters.
Despite conservatives’ calls for action on Voter ID fraud, Democrats have claimed that simply presenting a photo ID at polling places would be discriminatory toward certain Americans—most often times Democratic constituents.
The other panelists include Ari Berman, a writer for The Nation and author of Herding Donkeys: The Fight to Rebuild the Democratic Party and Reshape American Politics, Dan Vicuna, the Campus Vote Project Coordinator, and Tara McGuinness, Senior Vice President for the Center for American Progress.
Campus Progress is a gathering of like-minded progressive students who gather each year at their convention in Washington, D.C. in order to promote their campus activism initiatives.