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Public Statements

Disenfranchising Voters

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. ELLISON. Madam Speaker, State legislatures all across the country are passing photo ID laws that could strip millions of Americans of their right to vote. Students, communities of color, low-income individuals, and seniors are particularly at risk of being disenfranchised.

As just one example, in March this year, a World War II veteran in Tennessee was denied the right to vote because he did not have an ID that matched his assisted living address. In Minnesota, which is considering a misguided constitutional amendment on photo ID, 215,000 registered voters don't have a driver's license or ID card with a current address on it; and if it passes, it will disenfranchise all of them.

Why put these hundreds of thousands of voters at risk? Proponents claim fraud, but there's not any fraud. Voter fraud is already illegal, and the number of confirmed cases is insignificant statistically. There are only a tiny number of cases. For this, we're going to disfranchise literally millions of people?

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