Map: Voter ID Laws by State

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Demonstrators hold signs at an NAACP-organized rally on the steps of the Pennsylvania Capitol in Harrisburg, Pa., to protest the state's new voter identification law. Democrats say it's an election year stunt to steal the White House. Republicans say it's necessary to prevent voting fraud. (AP Photo/Marc Levy)

In our recent interview with Keesha Gaskins and Michael Waldman of the Brennan Center for Justice, Bill highlighted new election laws that keep the young, elderly, minorities and the poor from voting.

Key to this disenfranchisement is a nationwide surge in voter ID laws. Since 2005 — when the Indiana and Georgia state legislatures passed strict photo ID requirements for voters, some thirty states have passed voter ID laws, many based on model legislation drafted in 2009 by ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council (we’ll have more coverage on ALEC in a few weeks).

Laws that require citizens to show valid identification cards at the polls present a real challenge for some voters. Although most states will provide free ID cards to those without driver’s licenses, travel to the appropriate office to get cards can be inconvenient for those without access to cars or public transportation. What’s more, the documentation required to get the ID cards can be costly — and for some, impossible to acquire. According to a recent Brennan Center report, 11 percent of voting-age citizens are without required photo ID. Attorney General Eric Holder has equated the laws with the infamous “poll taxes” that were enacted as part of the Jim Crow laws in the South at the beginning of the 20th century.

Election Protection, an umbrella organization comprised of more than 100 local, state and national partners, has posted a helpful interactive map that enables anyone to find out what’s required to vote in each state. Roll over your state and click through for primary, early and absentee voting dates, as well as a list of requirements and instructions for getting ID if you need it to vote. Click on the map — make sure you have all the necessary documents ready to go for November 6.

map from 'Election Protection'

We’ve also launched a new spotlight page here at, The Fight to Vote.

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  • Anonymous

    The map on this page doesn’t work. Where’s the real map?

  • derek
    Interactive map is in the upper right corner on this page

  • Angel Starr

    i never been able to vote with out showing my ID, to verify that I was registered. So whats the big deal? If you cant get an ID, then you shouldnt vote, besides if your 18 having an ID is required anyway or you cant do anything, like get a job, go to college or bank account, or benefits of anykind. If you arent getting any benefits, dont have a job, then how are you getting by and why should you be able to vote?

  • Bill Benedict

    Wow, how enlightened an opinion….Thank yo for making that so clear… people like you who keep intolerance and ignorance alive and well here in the the good ol’ USA

  • Talk Issues

    Not everyone is hooked into the grid Angel. There are many people including elderly people who have no need for a picture ID. In our state an ID is $18 might not sound like a lot but for a person living on less than $300 a month it is a big hunk. For some people requiring an ID has the flavor of the Gestapo or required “slave papers” or Freedmen papers. It should not be difficult to vote. It’s the people’s only voice. Corporations have lots of access to the system with big money , lawyers and lobbies. The people just have one little vote on election day. It should be easy. You shouldn’t have to pay a “poll tax” or jump through hoops.

  • Nancy

    Is there anything we can do to help? I can certainly donate a little money for a proper I’d. But, has anyone considered getting these people signed up for absentee ballots?

  • Nancy

    You know, I think I remember reading about that in the constitution. Only those Americans may vote if they have a valid drivers license.

  • David

    ID is NOW not required to vote in PA :-)