The State of California has fired a “shot across the bow” at a proposal being considered by the Huntington Beach City Council majority to require voter identification at polling places and installing people or technology to monitor ballot drop boxes.
So far, it seems likely that the majority will sail right into the line of fire and face legal action from the State of California and others.
On Thursday, Oct. 5, the council will hold a special meeting to consider putting those proposed city charter amendments before voters, an expensive process that – even if adopted – will face the ire of the state attorney general’s office and possibly the federal Justice Department.
Attorney General Rob Bonta on Thursday sent a letter to the city and its council members warning against both the voter ID and ballot box monitoring proposals.
Those advocating for the voter ID – motivated by the largely non-existent issue of “voter fraud” – defend it on the basis that shucks, you have to have ID to get into a lot of places and functions, so why not participating in a democracy?
Yes, it’s true they won’t let you into Costco without that card and you may need to show a driver’s license to buy liquor or get into a bar.
But that’s very beside the point. U.S citizens 18 and over have the constitutional right to vote except in some very rare cases such as insanity or conviction of a major – usually violent – crime.
There’s no constitutional right to buy Bud Light or to operate a motorcycle on a public street, both of which may require one of those little plastic cards. But Sam’s Club isn’t Uncle Sam.
The “need” for identification is as flimsy as a Subway sandwich card and is just as palatable to thinking leaders as week-old bread in your Veggie Delite.