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California Photo ID to Vote Initiative (2010)

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A California Photo ID to Vote Initiative (09-0005, 09-0007, 09-0008, 09-0059, 09-0106) did not qualify for the November 2, 2010 state ballot as an initiated state statute.

George Runner was the measure's official proponent.

The proposed initiative had these provisions:

  • People will not be able to vote unless they present a government-issued photo-identification card at the polls.
  • Provisional voting will be allowed for eligible voters who fail to present government-issued photo-identification.
  • Provisional ballots and mail-in ballots will be deemed invalid unless the accompanying envelope is marked with the last four digits of a citizen’s California driver’s license, state identification card or social security number.
  • Citizens on probation for a felony offense will not be allowed to vote.
  • Ballots from absent military personnel are to be considered timely if they are postmarked by election day.

Five different versions of the measure were filed.

09-0106 details

Ballot title: Prohibits Voting by Those Who Do Not Provide Government-Issued Identification. Adds Additional Absentee Voting Requirements. Initiative Statute.

Official summary: Prohibits citizens from casting a regular ballot at the polls unless they present a government-issued photo-identification card. Restricts voting by citizens who fail to present government-issued photo-identification to casting provisional ballots. Invalidates mail-in and provisional ballots unless elections official verifies that last four digits of voter's government-issued identification number on ballot envelope are consistent with voter's corresponding government records. Establishes that ballots from absent military personnel are timely if received no later than 15 days after election.

Estimated fiscal impact: Some increased government costs associated with voting in elections. These costs probably would not be significant.


Example of a photo ID

On October 14, 2009, proponent George Runner filed a lawsuit against California Attorney General's office over the ballot title created by that office. Runner says the ballot title they came up with for the measure is "overtly biased".[1]

The title prepared by Jerry Brown is “Limits on voting” and the summary says “prohibits citizens from voting” unless they show ID. Runner says this wording is inaccurate inasmuch as the measure allows citizens who don’t possess ID to vote provisionally, and requires the Department of Motor Vehicles to issue free ID cards to voters without them.

Runner thinks “Voter identification requirement” is a more neutral and accurate description of the proposed measure.[1][2]

Path to the ballot

See also: California signature requirements

For version 09-0106 to qualify for the 2012 ballot, supporters will need to collect 433,971 valid signatures by July 19, 2010.

External links


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