(CNSNews.com) -- John Fund, journalist and author of the new book Who’s Counting? How Fraudsters and Bureaucrats Put Your Vote at Risk, said government and social groups should have “mobile vans go around to areas and get people an ID” instead of fighting voter ID laws wherever they are enacted.
"Everyone should get a free ID," he said.
CNSNews.com Editor-in-Chief Terry Jeffrey asked Fund, “In the state of Virginia, [they] put in this provision that you can prove your identity through something like a utility bill because they were worried about the one-half of one percent of people who don’t have a photo ID?”
Fund replied, “Right, and I say, rather than have all of this litigation where millions of dollars are spent on lawyers fighting these photo ID laws and millions of dollars spent in publicity attacking photo ID laws, let’s do what [former U.N. Ambassador] Andrew Young suggested. If we get people an ID, we’re doing them a favor. Let’s have massive outreach efforts. Let’s have mobile vans go around to areas and get people an ID. Let’s go through the homeless shelters and get people an ID.”
“Look, I want people to have an ID and we could solve this problem, but they won’t solve the problem because I think there’s another motive here, which is they must know that something is going on behind the curtain that they don’t want to stop,” he said.
He added that distributing photo IDs to the section of the population lacking them is a government program he would support.
Fund believes these programs can be managed at the state and local levels of government, and would not object to ID standards set by the federal government.
“Everyone should get a free ID, yes,” said Fund. “That is one government program -- and by the way, it doesn’t cost very much, it costs $3 or $4 dollars for every ID that you issue. But it would put a stop to this ridiculous argument that we’re preventing people from voting,” Fund told CNSNews.com. “What we’re really doing is helping them get in the mainstream of American life because you can’t do anything without an ID today.”
“I think there can be federal standards to make sure that the photo ID is certainly secure and they have real ID laws,” said Fund. “I do believe in federal standards but I think this can be done at the state and local level. I don’t want to hand this over to Washington, we all know they’d never get it right.”
In Who's Counting?, with co-author Hans Von Spakovsky, Fund cites a 2008 study from the Center for Democracy and Election Management at American University, which found less than .5% of survey respondents in Indiana, Maryland and Mississippi, lacked both a photo ID and citizenship identification.
As reported earlier by CNSNews.com, Fund said there currently are 11 states that require a potential voter to show a government-issued ID. There are 19 states that require some form of ID that does not need to have a photo of the voter, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Moreover, Fund writes in the book with co-author Hans Von Spakovsky that 3 out of 50 states -- Arizona, Georgia, and Kansas -- require proof of citizenship when an individual registers to vote.