Washington Watch Voter Suppression Update: Ohio And Florida (VIDEO)

In Pennsylvania on Thursday, the state supreme court held a hearing on that state’s voter I.D. law. Last week, we told you that a state judge had upheld that law, and this week’s hearing was an appeal of that decision. Now, there are seven supreme court justices in Pennsylvania, but right now they’re evenly divided between three Democrat and three Republican because one of the Republicans is facing corruption charges. Now, the questions of the court were tougher on the state’s attorney arguing to uphold the law. A decision is expected by the end of September.

We’ll keep you posted.

In Ohio, the secretary of state has now instructed local election officials to post hours for early voting. Up until last week, he was refusing to order the posting until an appeals court had ruled on early voting.

Let’s go to Florida, where the Republican governor, Rick Scott, instigated the purging of 2600 suspected non-citizens from the voting lists. [It] turns out the number of non-citizens was really 207 – not 2,600. And in a legal settlement with a voting rights group, the state agreed to inform those falsely purged that they have the right to vote.

Also in Florida, the U.S. Justice Department settled a dispute with five Florida counties subject to the Voting Rights Act to extend early voting hours in those counties.

In the Sunshine State, you will need a valid photo ID to vote.  The acceptable forms are:

■    Florida’s driver’s license,

■    Florida I.D. card issued by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles,

■    A U.S. passport,

■    Debit or credit card with your picture, and

■    I.D. cards from:  the military, schools, retirement centers, neighborhood associations, or public assistance.

 The photo I.D. needs to have your signature on it.  If not, you need a second I.D. with your signature.

Now, folks, if you don’t have any of these, Florida has a website, Gathergoget.com – that’s Gathergoget.com – which will help you make a list of what you need and where to go.  Now, the card costs $25, and you will walk out the door with the card; but getting the documents together will take some time, so you must start now.

One final note.  Even if you do not have the proper photo I.D., you can still cast a provisional ballot, and if your signature matches the one on your voter registration records, your ballot will count.

But, folks, I wouldn’t trust those Florida election officials.  Remember what happened in 2000.  So, be sure to get your I.D.