Point of View: Election integrity is not anti-democratic

Shortly after reading the “Fight for Democracy” Point of View in last week’s paper, I read “Is Ensuring Election Integrity Anti-Democratic,” by John R. Lott, Jr.

The contrast between the two articles was like night and day. While “Fight for Democracy” argued for loosening all requirements in our voting process to the point where there would be no possibility of ensuring the integrity of our elections, Mr. Lott made very cogent arguments for requiring photo ID to vote or request an absentee ballot. He pointed out that in 2005 the Carter-Baker Commission proposed a uniform system of requiring a photo ID in order to vote in U.S. elections. The report also noted that widespread absentee voting makes voter fraud more likely.

Mr. Lott also pointed out that a recent Rasmussen survey found that 80% of Americans support a voter ID requirement, although Democratic leaders across the board adamantly oppose voter ID requirements.

Most countries in Europe requite a photo ID to vote as well as requiring a photo ID when an absentee ballot is requested, if absentee voting is even allowed.

I cannot understand the aversion to requiring a photo ID to vote. Photo identification is required to transact virtually any type of business, such as renting an apartment, cashing a check, opening a bank account, registering at a hotel, buying tobacco products or alcohol. Are we supposed to believe that potential voters can conduct normal business transactions that require ID, but are unable to do so to vote?

The federalization of elections by the Freedom to Vote Act infringes on the constitutional right of states to regulate elections. In addition, automatic voter registration will swell the voter rolls with ineligible voters as has happened in Alaska, where far more people are registered to vote than eligible voters living in the state. Automatic voter registration combined with unrestricted absentee voting clearly sets the stage for fraud.

Please contact our senators and encourage them to stop the Freedom to Vote Bill and do everything in their power to implement a requirement for photo ID to vote.

Charlie Franz is a retired U.S. Army officer and health care administrator. He currently serves as Vice Chair for District 31 of the Alaska Republican Party.

Charlie Franz.