Gov. Jay Nixon on Thursday vetoed a bill establishing a photo ID requirement to cast a ballot, calling the legislation “an affront to Missourians’ fundamental right to vote.”
“Making voting more difficult for qualified voters and disenfranchising certain classes of people is wrong,” Nixon said in a letter to lawmakers explaining his veto.
In 2006, Republicans pushed through a photo ID bill that was later struck down by the Missouri Supreme Court. The court ruled that the law amounted to a “heavy and substantial burden on Missourians’ free exercise of the right of suffrage.”
Republicans have pushed for voter ID every year since that Supreme Court ruling, and each time the effort has been derailed by either a court ruling or Nixon’s veto pen. Kansas adopted a voter photo ID law in 2011.
This year, Senate Republicans negotiated a compromise with Democrats….
In addition to the bill setting up the photo ID requirements, lawmakers also approved an amendment to Missouri’s constitution that permits the establishment of a photo ID requirement. That proposed amendment, which will appear on the statewide ballot in November, is necessary because of the 2006 state Supreme Court decision.
If voters reject the amendment, then a photo ID requirement continues to be unconstitutional.