There is good and bad news about the upcoming election. The good news is that there are only a few more days until the election, which means the campaign ads will go away soon. The bad news is that we only have a few days before the election, and we’ll have to live with the results for the next two years. I’m more than ready for the constant polling calls to stop:

Annoying pollster: “If the election were held today, would you vote for the Democrat or Republican candidate for governor?”
Annoyed me: “Neither, because I’d be unaware that the election had been changed from Nov. 7th.” *click*

[As the person fielding most of these calls, I'm getting reeeeeeally tired of 'em. My response to a recent call:
Clueless shill: "Hi, I'm (name) from (annoying organization) and I know you've been getting a lot of political calls, but--"
Me: "You're right, I have. Goodbye." *click* --TPK]

Speaking of things annoying, Oregonians mail in their ballots. There is no going to your local precinct to vote for the people you want to represent you. Instead, we vote by mail for our candidates of choice, hoping that our votes are not overshadowed by those of illegal voters. And it’s trivially simple for someone to register illegally here in Oregon. Here are the options you can use to identify yourself as an Oregon voter if you don’t have a valid Oregon driver’s license, ID, or Social Security number:

If you do not have a current, valid Oregon DMV Driver’s License/ID or a Social Security number, you must affirm this on the voter registration card, and if you are registering by mail, you must provide a copy of one of the following:

  • valid photo identification
  • a paycheck stub
  • a utility bill
  • a bank statement
  • a government document
  • proof of eligibility under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) or the Voting Accessibility for the Elderly and Handicapped Act (VAEH)

And all these documents prove U.S. citizenship and Oregon residence? Hardly! But these are the “new laws” that require people to identify themselves with one of the above by mail. Previous laws were even less stringent, if I can use that word to describe this lax law. Saying there is voter fraud in Oregon is like saying there are hemp products at Burning Man. It’s not a question of “if,” but a question of “how much.”

But not all the voting news is bad. The Supreme Court has allowed an Arizona law requiring photo ID at the voting booth to take effect for the 2006 election day. Proposition 200 was passed in Arizona in 2004, but the 9th Circus Circuit Court of Appeals put the kibosh on voter ID for two years. Requiring a photo ID is too much of a hardship for the poor and/or elderly, don’t you know. But is it really? Here’s the final paragraph from the news article summing up the Supreme Court’s action:

In order to cast a ballot at the polls, voters must show a photo ID with current street address or two forms of identification, such as a utility bill or car registration, with name and street address.

So if you don’t have a photo ID with current street address, such as a driver’s license, then two forms of identification are good enough. Pray tell, where is the hardship in providing a utility bill? I guess it’s a difficult thing if you are an illegal alien, but it’s not that much of a hardship for a legal resident.

And legal voting should be something we encourage.

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