Looking to continue the spread of voter suppression laws that have popped up over the past two years, lawmakers introduced voter ID legislation in three more states last week.
Legislators in Arkansas, Montana, and New York introduced separate bills to require voters to show certain forms of government-issued photo identification or be denied their right to vote.
Two of the bills — SB 2 in Arkansas and SB 100 in New York — are the strict form of voter ID, whereby voters who don’t have an acceptable form of photo ID are simply turned away from the polls. The bill in Montana — HB 108 — allows those voters who don’t have photo ID to cast a provisional ballot.
Approximately 1 in 10 citizens lack photo ID, putting them at risk of being disenfranchised. According to the Brennan Center, minorities, senior citizens, and poor voters tend to be hardest hit by new voter ID laws.
Still, voter rights advocates needn’t sound the alarm in these three states, yet. The voter ID bills face a tough legislative future. In both Arkansas and Montana, Republicans control both chambers of the state legislature, but Democrats still control the governor’s mansion. In New York, Democrats enjoy both the governorship and the state Assembly.