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Study That Claimed Voter ID Laws Suppress “Minority” Votes Debunked

According to certain liberals, requiring citizens to present a state-issued form of photo identification is a burden on “minorities” and the “poor,” although they, like everyone else, are required to show ID to board airplanes, open bank accounts, enroll to receive government benefits, etc.

News sources widely cited a study published last month that concluded requiring citizens to show photo ID before voting suppressed “minority” turnout.

But according to a new study (PDF), the previous study’s conclusion isn’t supported by the data. The new paper’s arguments apparently are so convincing, the leftist site Vox published an opinion piece with the headline, “A major study finding that voter ID laws hurt minorities isn’t standing up well under scrutiny.”

But look at the url: study-voter-id-racism. Wish hard enough, and it might come true!

From the study:

Strict voter ID laws may reduce turnout, particularly among minorities, but the evidence presented in HLN [authors’ last initials] does not constitute reliable information documenting such a relationship. HLN’s measures of turnout often substantially differ from official state turnout.

In short, the data and research design in HLN leave us unable to draw actionable conclusions about the impact of voter ID laws on turnout.

The authors of the HLN study, the Washington Examiner reported, “used the wrong data, they misinterpreted that data, they failed to take into account other pre-existing factors that explain differences between states with and without voter ID, and when tested, their model demonstrably assumes what it is trying to prove.”

The most important questions in the voter-ID debate are these:

Why aren’t black liberals offended by the implication that black Americans are they’re too stupid, ignorant, and/or lazy to be expected to visit the DMV and obtain photo ID?

Why not reject race-based lowered expectations and encourage and/or help “poor” blacks obtain these documents?

Photo credit: lettawren (Creative Commons) – Some rights reserved

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