Missouri House passes photo ID resolution

May 2, 2011

A proposed constitutional amendment that would require Missouri voters to show photo identification at the polls has passed the Missouri House.

The resolution’s sponsor, State Representative Stanley Cox (R, Sedalia), argued that a photo ID is a better method of identification that a utility bill, which is allowed under current law.

“You give me any modern computer and a nice printer, I guarantee you I can create an invoice from a utility company that at least looks like a utility company (invoice), to my name at my home address,” Cox said during floor debate.

Opponents, including State Representative Stacey Newman (D, Richmond Heights), say it would disenfranchise tens of thousands of Missouri voters.

“(If) you vote for this bill, you should...be ashamed, because you’re also standing up and saying to your minority voters, to your disabled voters, to your elderly voters, you no longer have a right to vote,” Newman said.

The resolution now goes back to the Missouri Senate, where it needs another vote.  If it passes both chambers, it would go before Missouri voters next year.

A photo ID law passed in 2006 was struck down by the Missouri Supreme Court.