by Chris Haire
When I first heard that a federal court proclaimed that South Carolina's Voter ID law was legal, I fell to the ground and began to sob.
Some say they haven't heard such racket since Octomom gave birth to her brood.
Others say my cries were so loud that Rush Limbaugh's hearing aid broke and the Oxycontin pills in his cigar case rattled.
And then there are those who proclaim that my tears were so great that the Crosstown flooded.
Anyhow, that doesn't matter. The sobbing soon stopped.
I had learned that the Voter ID law that had won Uncle Sam's approval was not the same Voter ID law that had passed. It's balls had been snipped.
In fact, the Voter ID law as it stands now doesn't require anyone to actually produce a photo ID before voting. From now until the end of time, ID-less voters in South Carolina can show up at the polls and simply tell poll workers that they just weren't able to get a photo ID and that's that.
Even better, these voters could offer up pretty much any reason for not having a photo ID — they couldn't get out of work, they didn't have a birth certificate, they had to watch the kids, they got really fucking high last night and, well, the ghost of Alfonso Bedoya looked them dead in the eye and said, "Badges? You don't need no stinking badges." The reason is irrelevant.
However, things are not as clear as I once thought they were. While voting today, I was handed a Voter ID fact sheet from poll workers that was designed to explain the law to voters.
According to the flyer, voters don't have to present a photo ID. All they have to do is sign an affidavit at the polling place noting why they couldn't get an ID and pretty much any reason will suffice. So far so good.
But then this paragraph mucks up the whole thing:
"If you do NOT have Photo ID and do NOT have a reasonable impediment to obtaining one, or simply forgot to bring your Photo ID with you to the polling place, you may still vote a provisional ballot. However, for your vote to be counted, you must provide one of the Photo IDs to the county election commission prior to certification of the election (usually Thursday or Friday after the election)."
Now, when I initially read that, I didn't think anything of it. But then I read it again. And again. And again. And that's when I began to wonder if Uncle Sam had snowed us. Will photo ID-less voters have to make an additional trip to their county election commission after they've cast their provisional ballots and signed an affidavit? If so, this is exactly the sort of thing that the GOP needs to bump scores of Democratic voters off the voter rolls. And frankly, that fucking blows.
Anyhow, I'll try to find out more tomorrow. The workday is done and it's time to party.