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Politics and Government

Politics and Government

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State judge strikes down Pennsylvania voter ID law

Updated: Friday, January 17 2014, 12:30 PM EST

By: WJAC Web Staff and The Associated Press

HARRISBURG -- A state judge has struck down the law requiring Pennsylvania’s voters to show photo identification at the polls.

Commonwealth Court Judge Bernard McGinley said the mandatory photo requirement, the centerpiece of Pennsylvania’s embattled 2012 voter identification law, places an unreasonable burden on the fundamental right to vote.

The decision paves the way for an expected appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Republicans approved the law over the protests of Democrats in the General Assembly.

During a 12-day trial last summer, plaintiffs said hundreds of thousands of voters lacked acceptable IDs and the inconvenience of getting a photo ID might discourage some from voting. State officials insisted there were ample opportunities for voters to get valid ID if they did not have one.

The court has barred enforcement of law since the 2012 general election. However, voters were asked, but not required, to show identification for voting in the most recent general and primary elections.

State judge strikes down Pennsylvania voter ID law

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Edgar Snyder