Lawmakers step up when governor wouldn't

Lawmakers step up when governor wouldn't

Lawmakers step up when governor wouldn't

The Pennsylvania Senate has approved legislation allowing voters to decide if the state Constitution should be amended to require identification each time a voter casts a ballot.

Senator Judy Ward (R-30) explains that as of right now, voters only need to present identification when they are new to a polling place.

"But I've been hearing so much from constituents who say [they] need identification to buy a six-pack of beer, a pack of cigarettes, cold medicine, rent a hotel room, get a COVID vaccine -- you name it," the senator relays. "But we don't need identification to utilize one of our most sacred rights, and that is the right to vote."

Ward, Judy (R-PA) Ward

The Pennsylvania Senate has approved Senate Bill 735 by a vote of 30 to 20. One Democrat and one Independent voted with Republicans; all Republicans voted for the bill. The measure is now in the Pennsylvania House.

"It needs to be voted on in two consecutive sessions by each chamber, the House and the Senate, and then the next session, the House and Senate would vote on it again," Ward details. "The earliest it would go to voters for their consideration would be May 2023. I know that's a while off, but we just feel that the governor has been saying that he would not sign any kind of voter ID law, and … this allows the people to decide."

Pennsylvania's governor is Democrat Tom Wolf.