The PJ Tatler

Missouri Judge Sends Voter ID Measure Back to Lawmakers

A Missouri judge today struck down a Missouri constitutional amendment that would have established a photo ID requirement to vote.

Cole County Circuit Court Judge Patricia Joyce ruled that the referendum language, which was to appear on the Nov. 6 ballot, was “misleading” and “unfair.”

“This is a victory for voting rights and it affirms the most fundamental constitutional guarantee for every citizen in Missouri,” said Rep. William “Lacy” Clay (D-Mo.). “Today’s ruling blocks a blatant attempt to disenfranchise seniors, students, the disabled, minorities and the rural poor.

The summary in question was: “Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to adopt the Voter Protection Act and allow the General Assembly to provide by general law for advance voting prior to election day, voter photo identification requirements, and voter requirements based on whether one appears to vote in person or by absentee ballot?”

To appear on the ballot, state legislators need to rewrite the summary and pass the revised version by May 18.

“The misleading ballot language was designed to confuse Missouri voters into approving an amendment that could have disenfranchised up to 350,000 registered voters,” Clay said.

He and other activists have been trying to defeat the voter ID effort in the state.