Nadler: Voter ID Laws Must Be ‘Carefully Policed by the Federal Government’

By Julia Johnson | June 30, 2021 | 11:01am EDT
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.)  (Getty images)
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) (Getty images)

(CNS News) -- When asked whether a person should be required to show an ID in order to vote, as is often required to purchase alcohol, Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) said yes, but stressed that the ID policy must not be discriminatory and must be “very carefully policed by the federal government.”

At the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday, CNS News asked Rep. Nadler,  “Since we require an ID to buy alcohol, should we also require an ID to vote?”

The representative answered, “Uh, no. Well, an ID, yes. The problem with the IDs that they use is that usually the policies are discriminatory. Like, they’ll allow an ID from a gun store, but not from a college, because they don’t want college kids to vote.”

“They have all sorts of ways of racially skewing the ID requirements,” said Nadler. “And that’s got to be very carefully policed by the federal government.” 

CNS News then asked, “How would we remedy that so that IDs are not discriminatory?”

“By restoring pre-clearance under the Voting Rights act,” Nadler said. 

Preclearance refers to a section of the 1965 Voting Rights Act that said states had to obtain federal approval (preclearance) before changing any of their voting laws or practices.  In the 2013 Supreme Court case, Shelby County v. Holder, that part of the Voting Rights Act was ruled unconstitutional.

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Through their sweeping electoral change legislation, the For the People Act, which was filibustered in the Senate last week, Democrats sought to expand federal power over elections and undercut state voter ID laws. Although the legislation is going nowhere now, Democrats are pushing alternative bills. 

On June 25, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said, “[I]n the first five months of this year alone, nearly 400 voter restriction bills have been introduced across 48 states [by Republicans].  This voter suppression campaign, deepened by vicious gerrymandering and a torrent of secret special interest money, cannot go unanswered.” 

“Congress will continue the fight to pass H.R. 1, which would secure the ballot for voters now,” said Pelosi.  “As we do, we must also secure the ballot for the future, and so we will continue to advance H.R. 4, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.”

The Republican National Committee has denounced the Democrats’ efforts, saying, “Democrats are currently attempting a partisan power grab with their radical H.R. 1/S. 1 “For The Politicians” Act.” This bill, filibustered for the time-being, “is a federal takeover of state elections that would eviscerate commonsense state voter ID laws currently in place in many states, force states to allow ballot harvesting, and make taxpayers fund the campaigns of career politicians.”  

Transcript

CNS News: “Since we require an ID to buy alcohol, should we also require an ID to vote?”

Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.): “Uh, no. Well, an ID, yes. The problem with the IDs that they use is that usually the policies are discriminatory. Like, they’ll allow an ID from a gun store, but not from a college, because they don’t want college kids to vote. They have all sorts of ways of racially skewing the ID requirements. And that’s got to be very carefully policed by the federal government.”

Johnson: “How would we remedy that so that IDs are not discriminatory?”

Nadler: “By restoring pre-clearance under the Voting Rights act.” 

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